(Updated)

Maybank comes forward as third party to contest former TH chairman forfeiture case

Maybank comes forward as third party to contest former TH chairman forfeiture case
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KUALA LUMPUR (March 26): Maybank has come forward as a third party to contest a government forfeiture on approximately RM16 million from the wife and children of former Tabung Haji (TH) chairman Datuk Seri Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim and their family-linked company. 

Of the RM16 million in cash and assets, Maybank, through its lawyer Poh Choo Hoe, is trying to contest the forfeiture of a shop lot near Sunway Geo Avenue, however the value of the shop lot is not known. 

The forfeiture was filed under Section 56 of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act. 

Deputy Public Prosecutor Aslida Ahad informed Justice Datuk Muhammad Jamil Hussin of Maybank’s intention to contest the forfeiture. 

When met after proceedings, the lawyer said Maybank will file an affidavit this afternoon to stake its claim. 

Jamil then set June 29 to hear the government’s application to forfeit the RM16 million from Abdul Azeez. 

The prosecution had named Abdul Azeez's wife Khadijah Mohd Nor, his sons Mohamed Khairul Anwar and Mohamed Khairul Azman, daughters Khaleeda Azwa and Khaleeda Azeera, and family-linked company Azeera Management Consultants (M) Sdn Bhd as respondents in the case in a bid to recover the RM16 million.

The money is said to have been kept in their Tabung Haji accounts and frozen since December 2018.

Azeera Management Consultants is one of the companies said to be involved in Abdul Azeez's corruption and money-laundering case, where he is standing trial with his brother Datuk Abdul Latif Abdul Rahim. The former Tabung Haji chairman's wife and children are said to be directors of the company.

Abdul Azeez, 53, is charged with accepting bribes totalling RM5.2 million in connection with road projects in Perak and Kedah, and nine counts of money laundering involving nearly RM140 million. Meanwhile, Abdul Latif, 62, is charged with abetting his brother.

Surin Murugiah