Najib’s lawyer Shafee labels ‘unethical’ IRB’s RM9.41m unpaid taxes suit as a political move against him

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Lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah arrives at the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya May 18, 2021. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah arrives at the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya May 18, 2021. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

PUTRAJAYA, May 18 — Lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah today described the Inland Revenue Board’s (IRB) suit against him for alleged tax arrears of some RM9.41 million (RM9,414,708.32) over a period of five years as a move that was political in nature.

In confirming he has yet to receive both writs of summons and statement of claims to date, Muhammad Shafee said the attempt by the IRB was “unethical” and “typical” of them.

“We have not received anything from the IRB until today.

“I regard this as a political move. That is all I have to say,” he told reporters briefly here at the Palace of Justice.

Muhammad Shafee was present for the hearing of Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s appeal against the former prime minister’s conviction and jail sentence for misappropriation of RM42 million SRC International Sdn Bhd funds.

In its lawsuit filed at the Kuala Lumpur High Court on May 6, IRB alleged that Muhammad Shafee owed the government the sum for unpaid tax over five years — 2011 (RM434,326.37), 2012 (RM978,854.11), 2013 (RM3.58 million), 2014 (RM1.73 million) and 2016 (RM1.82 million).

The RM9.41 million included an additional late payment penalty incurred by Muhammad Shafee’s failure to settle the outstanding tax arrears between 2011 and 2016.

In court documents sighted by Malay Mail, IRB said notices of assessments for the five years were mailed to Muhammad Shafee’s last known address here on May 31, 2019 but the notices were never returned to IRB.

Muhammad Shafee currently represents Najib in the SRC International and 1Malaysia Development Berhad corruption trials who is also currently facing similar tax arrears lawsuits from IRB.

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