KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 11): Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor is to apply to suspend the proceedings of a lawsuit filed against her by a Lebanese jewellery firm seeking the return of 44 pieces of jewellery it has claimed to have sent to her.
Lawyer N. Rajivan, representing Rosmah, said the application was necessary because the government had yet to verify whether the jewellery was in the possession of the police or Rosmah, wife of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
He said Judicial Commissioner Wong Chee Lin had set Feb 25 to hear the application after he was informed of Rosmah's intention to file the application.
"We will file the application to suspend proceedings until the end of the seizure period of the jewellery. We will file it before Feb 25," Rajivan said when met by reporters after the management of the case in Wong's chambers.
Rajivan said he and fellow counsel Reza Rahim believed the deadline of the seizure period of the jewellery was May.
Lawyer Datuk G. David, who is acting on behalf of Lebanese firm Global Royalty Trading SAL, said the court had also ordered the government to file a statement of defence as the second defendant in the suit, and that the trial had been set for March 4 and 5.
On Aug 20, 2018, the High Court allowed the government's application to be an intervenor in the suit and was named the second defendant.
On June 26, 2018, Global Royalty sued Rosmah, demanding that she return 44 jewellery items sent to her for viewing purposes, or to pay the full price of all the items worth US$14.79 million (RM60.21 million).
In its statement of claim, Global Royalty said Rosmah was a long-time regular customer and that it would usually send her jewellery consignments upon her request. Rosmah would then evaluate and purchase the jewellery of her choice with the payment made either by herself or a third party.
The company, which supplies jewellery to royalty, as well as renowned clients from around the world, claimed that unselected jewellery would usually be returned, and, in certain circumstances, Rosmah would borrow the jewellery and return it to the plaintiff later.
Global Royalty claimed it had sent 44 jewellery items on Feb 10, 2018, including diamond necklaces, earrings, rings, bracelets and tiaras, each worth between US$124,000 and US$925,000 to the defendant, hand-delivered via two of its agents.
The company said Rosmah had acknowledged receipt of the items and agreed to the terms and conditions contained in Memorandum No 926 pertaining to the jewellery.
The company claimed that Rosmah, via a letter dated May 22, 2018, also confirmed and acknowledged the receipt of the jewellery but stated that all the jewellery was no longer in her possession, because it was seized and placed under the custody of the Malaysian authorities.
Global Royalty has applied for the court to declare it as the legal owner of all the jewellery items and that ownership had never been transferred to the defendant.
Rosmah, in her statement of defence filed on July 23, 2018, denied purchasing any of the jewellery and that the company had willingly sent the items to her for viewing purposes in her capacity as the wife of the Malaysian prime minister at the time, without any obligation to make a purchase. — Bernama