KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 28): The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has today arrested Datuk Hasanah Abdul Hamid, the former director-general of Malaysian External Intelligence Organisation (MEIO) who wrote a controversial letter to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) seeking the US support for the Barisan Nasional (BN) government ahead of the 14th general election (GE14) on May 9.
According to a source close to the matter, Hasanah, 61, was arrested under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009 for abuse of power and using office position for personal gratification, which carries a maximum of 20-year imprisonment term if convicted.
“Hasanah was arrested at the MACC headquarters in Putrajaya at 4.15pm today, shortly after she arrived to give a statement,” a source told theedgemarkets.com.
He added that the anti-graft agency will take Hasanah to the Magistrate’s Court in Putrajaya tomorrow to obtain a remand order.
The source said Hasanah was arrested by the MACC for allegedly misusing the election funds allocated for GE14.
“Initial investigations revealed that Hasanah and her officers were found to have used the allocated funds for personal gratifications,” the source noted.
When contacted, MACC deputy chief commissioner for operations Datuk Seri Azam Baki confirmed the arrest, but did not elaborate.
“Yes, I can confirm that the MACC has arrested her (Hasanah),” he said.
Earlier today, the MACC reportedly secured a five-day remand order against seven senior government officers, who are believed to be Hasanah’s former officers from the MEIO, for alleged misappropriation of election funds to the tune of millions of ringgit.
The remand order against the seven suspects, aged between 34 and 49, was granted by Magistrate Shah Wira Abdul Halim.
Hasanah recently made the headlines after it was revealed that she had written a letter to CIA director Gina Haspel a week before GE14 seeking Washington’s support for the BN administration.