Datuk Seri Haji Mohammad Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, a Malaysian politician who served as the prime minister of Malaysia from 2009 to 2018, has failed to recuse Judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah from chairing his 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) trial.
Reportedly, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s recusal application was dismissed. Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah said that the former prime minister was unable to prove the burden of real danger of bias.
Najib Razak’s lead counsel, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, told the court that the former prime minister may not get a fair trial if his case is heard before judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah because of his past relationship with former 1MDB general counsel Jasmine Loo Ai Swan.
Last month, Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah said that he worked with Jasmine Loo years ago. Her name was mentioned a lot of times during the trial, which started in 2019.
On Friday, the Court of Appeal judge said that there was no communication between Jasmine Loo and him after she left the legal firm on December 31, 2008.
The former prime minister has repeatedly said that he never received a fair hearing over the RM2.28bil 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) trial. He has also denied any wrongdoing in relation to the RM2.28bil 1Malaysia Development Berhad trial.
The trial began in 2019. In 2020, the former prime minister was found guilty for illegally receiving about $10m from SRC International. Subsequently, he was given a 12-year sentence.
The former prime minister of Malaysia is on trial for a total of 25 charges. Four cases are related to his abuse of power and 21 cases are related to money laundering. His wife, Rosmah Mansor, is also facing charges over corruption cases. The 1MDB development fund was established when Najib Razak became prime minister of Malaysia in 2009.