KUALA LUMPUR: Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s application, to have his passport returned to him permanently, has to be rejected by the Sessions Court here, as the former prime minister is still facing three charges of money laundering and there is a risk of him fleeing.
Deputy public prosecutor, Lim Wai Keong, said that Muhyiddin should file an application in the Sessions Court for the release of a temporary passport, from time to time, if needed for the purpose of travelling abroad.
“Therefore, there is no issue for the permanent release of the passport worth considering. I stress that the applicant’s (Muhyiddin) application is unfounded, unreasonable and inconvenient to the court process. The charges against the applicant are very serious,” he said.
Lim said this in a counter affidavit to Muhyiddin’s application for the court to change the bond bail imposed on him so that his passport, which was surrendered to the Sessions Court as a bail condition, be released unconditionally.
Regarding the charge of money laundering, Lim said that the charges can stand on their own, even though the predicate charges (charges of using a position) have been quashed by the High Court.
On Aug 15, the High Court here acquitted Muhyiddin of four charges of using his position for bribes, amounting to RM232.5 million, for Bersatu, related to the Jana Wibawa project, after allowing Muhyiddin’s application to drop all the charges.
Lim, in the affidavit, denied the existence of a material change of circumstances and injustice to the applicant if the surety bond conditions were maintained, because the conditions had been agreed upon by the applicant himself before, and had been duly considered by the court.
“The applicant has never failed to appear in court, but every time (court) fixed date for the mention, the applicant also applied for exemption from attending court, and the respondent (prosecution) has also never objected to the exemption application,” he said.
According to Lim, despite the bond’s additional conditions, the applicant can still continue his daily life, and the applicant’s rights are still protected under the Federal Constitution.
Muhyiddin, who is also the president of Bersatu, in his application filed on Oct 16, said that he had planned a holiday with his family abroad and that the holiday was important for him to spend time with his family as this year was a very stressful year for him and his family.
In addition, Muhyiddin also intends to undergo a heart examination, through a cardiac stress test on a treadmill, at Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore, which requires him to walk or run on the machine.
The court set Nov 23 to hear Muhyiddin’s application.
The Pagoh Member of Parliament faces two charges of receiving money from illegal activities, amounting to RM195 million, from Bukhary Equity Sdn Bhd, which was deposited into Bersatu’s CIMB Bank account.
He is alleged to have committed the act at CIMB Bank Menara KL Branch, Jalan Stesen Sentral, here, between Feb 25 and July 16, 2021, and Feb 8 and July 8, 2022.
Muhyiddin was also charged at the Shah Alam Sessions Court on March 13, with receiving money from illegal activities, amounting to RM5 million, and the case was transferred to the Sessions Court, here, for a joint trial.
On Oct 2, Muhyiddin filed an application for a discharge not amounting to acquittal of the three charges.-Bernama