Malaysia’s high court fully acquits former spy chief in RM50 million criminal breach of trust trial

Hasanah Abdul Hamid, a former spy chief, was acquitted by the Kuala Lumpur High Court in a criminal breach of trust (CBT) case involving RM50.4 million (US$12.1 million) in government funds.
Judicial commissioner Roz Mawar Rozain rendered the judgment today in response to Hasanah’s appeal of the court’s decision from April of last year, which gave her a discharge that did not amount to an acquittal (DNAA).

Under the law, an accused granted a DNAA may still be charged for the same offense in future.

But the judge decided today that having the DNAA hang over Hasanah for more than a year was “not fair,” adding that justice was not served in that way.

The prosecution, which consisted of DPPs Mohd Fairuz Johari and Mohammed Fakhrurrazi Ahmad Salim, did not challenge Hasanah’s application for a full acquittal.

A group of attorneys, including Suhaimi Ibrahim, Hamdan Hamzah, Muhammad Ashraff Mohd Diah, Izwan Ariff Ibrahim, Nurfaida Mohd Rashidee, and Mona Anak Lubon, represented Hasanah in court.

On October 25, 2018, the 63-year-old claimed trial and pleaded not guilty for one count of CBT, involving RM50.4 million of public funds when she was the director-general of the Prime Minister’s Department Research Division.

She was accused of committing the offense between April 30 and May 9, 2018, in the Prime Minister’s Department in Putrajaya.

Hasanah was inculpated for violating Penal Code Section 409, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, a flogging, and a fine.

However, in April of last year, justice Ahmad Shahrir Mohd Salleh granted a DNAA as a result of the prosecution’s claim that there had been a recent development in the case.

According to Roz, Shahrir was legally correct in giving the DNAA because the evidence at the time suggested that Hasanah would probably be recharged.