Rosmah Mansor, the wife of former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, has been found guilty of all three charges of corruption she faced in connection with the Sarawak rural schools’ solar energy project.
She has been sentenced to 10 years on each of the three charges, to be run concurrently, and ordered to pay a fine of RM970 million (US$216 million). If she fails to pay the fine, she’ll be forced to serve an additional 10 years on each charge.
The verdict was delivered today by High Court Judge Mohamad Zaini Mazlan.
In 2018, Rosmah was charged with soliciting RM187.5 million (US$41.9 million) in bribes from contractor Saidi Abang Samsudin in 2016 and 2017 so that his company, Jepak Holdings, could secure a RM1.25 billion government project to supply solar energy to 369 rural schools in Sarawak state.
She was also accused of receiving additional bribes of up to RM6.5 million from Saidi between 2016 and 2017.
Speaking for herself during mitigation, Rosmah insisted that she had never solicited money from anyone and was saddened by the decision.
According to a report from Free Malaysia Today, Rosmah was in tears as she attempted to maintain her innocence and insisted that she was the victim.
“I hope your honour will consider (the fact) that I am a woman taking over a man’s role in my house,” she begged.
Her husband Najib began serving a 12-year prison term on Aug. 23 for embezzling RM42 million from 1MDB-linked company SRC International after his final appeal to overturn his guilty verdict was rejected by the Supreme Court.
Rosmah’s verdict comes after a drawn-out court case that started in February 2020 and ended only on Feb. 23 this year. The trial took 42 days.
The proceedings were delayed due to Rosmah’s health issues and a witness being placed on home surveillance due to the pandemic.
Rosmah will not be going to jail today as she was granted bail and a bid to stay the execution of imprisonment and fine pending her appeal to the Court of Appeal.
She is set to attend another trial due to start later this year. The separate trial will address 12 charges of money laundering and 5 charges of tax evasion totaling RM7.1 million.