KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 28 — Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is seeking to continue his lawsuit against former attorney general Tan Sri Tommy Thomas for alleged wrongful prosecution related to cases involving 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and its former subsidiary SRC International Sdn Bhd.
With the High Court previously striking out the lawsuit against Thomas, Najib has now appealed to the Court of Appeal to reverse the decision.
Lawyer Melody Tham confirmed to Malay Mail that Najib had filed the notice of appeal on December 22, explaining: “This is to appeal against the judge’s decision to strike out Datuk Seri Najib’s suit against Tommy Thomas dated November 25, 2022.”
Najib’s appeal is scheduled to come up for case management on March 22, she said.
On October 22, 2021, Najib had filed his civil lawsuit against Thomas and the Malaysian government for having pressed 35 criminal charges against him in four trials, claiming that the then attorney general had purportedly abused his powers to prosecute him.
The four criminal cases which Najib is alleging to be wrongful prosecution are the trial where he is facing 21 money-laundering charges and four power abuse charges involving more than RM2 billion of 1MDB funds, his joint trial with former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah involving six criminal breach of trust charges over RM6.6 billion of government funds, a trial where he is facing one power abuse charge in relation to alleged instructions given to amend the Auditor-General’s 1MDB audit report before it was presented to Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee, and three money-laundering charges involving RM27 million of SRC funds.
In that lawsuit, Najib had asked for the courts to declare that Thomas had committed misfeasance in public office, and had also sought over RM1.9 million to compensate for his alleged losses, and compensation in the form of general damages, exemplary damages and aggravated damages.
Thomas and the Malaysian government had on November 18, 2021 applied to strike out Najib’s lawsuit against them.
Previously, financial publication The Edge had reported Najib as having on September 8, 2022 dropped the Malaysian government from the lawsuit.
On November 25 this year, the High Court allowed Thomas’s application to strike out the lawsuit filed by Najib, ruling that the claim by Najib is an abuse of court process.
Among other things, the High Court said Najib could have filed the lawsuit if he had been acquitted from all these four cases, but said the lawsuit was premature as the criminal trial for the four cases have yet to be completed and are still pending.