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Taxmen probe at least three Warisan assemblymen
Published on: Saturday, July 11, 2020
By: Stefyanie Myla Micheal, FMT
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Masiung
Kota Kinabalu:  A newly-appointed State Department Director and a lawyer-cum-political secretary to a former Warisan Sabah Federal Minister were remanded by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to assist in investigations into corruption cases.

The Director was brought to the Magistrate Court, Thursday, and remanded four days to facilitate investigations into corruption allegations linked to infrastructure development projects under the State Infrastructure Development Ministry.

The relevant Minister Datuk Peter Anthony (pic) is, himself, facing multiple alleged corruption charges.

The lawyer-cum-political secretary was remanded six days until July 15 by Magistrate Afiq Agoes following an application by the MACC and would be investigated under Section 17A of the MACC Act 2009. 

Datuk Peter Anthony

It was learnt that the lawyer was detained in the nation’s capital and flown back to Sabah the same day.

His case is believed to be linked to a Risda land deal in which Peter Anthony and another are now facing several charges.

The lawyer was represented by Counsel Dominic Chew and Faezah Abby Ibnu while prosecuting Officer Mohd Faliq Basirudin appeared for the MACC.

Anthony had previously pleaded not guilty to abetting Michael Persius Ubu, the lawyer hired by Risda to see through the purchase of a plot of land in Tongod, in interior Sabah.

The case involves RM15,545,400 worth of funds from the federal agency said to have been used to acquire 2,740ha of land in Kampung Sungai Pinangah and Kampung Sungai Laban.

Anthony, who is Melalap assemblyman, also faces five counts of money laundering amounting to RM8.75 million.

It is believed that a team from Putrajaya is carrying out the probe.

Meanwhile, at least three Warisan assemblymen claimed that they were visited by income tax officers after a special team from the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN) raided the house of Kuamut Assemblyman Masiung Banah on Wednesday, according to FMT.

The officers did not seize anything but only told the assemblymen they were checking whether they had not declared any additional income for the previous years.

Kamabong Assemblyman Jamawi Jaafar said the team visited his house here at 11am.

He said he was surprised by the reason given by the officers as he had been “faithfully” declaring his earnings and paying his income tax when it was time to do so.

“The officers told me they wanted to see if I had not declared my income for the last five years. 

“But that cannot be since I have filed my income tax returns every year.

“They said they were just doing their job, but it’s all right, I will abide by the notice to fill in the forms in 30 days.”

Another Warisan Assemblyman said to have been contacted by the LHDN officers asked not to be named while the third could not be contacted.

It was reported that officers did not confiscate any item but only took pictures in and around Masiung’s house in Kepayan here on Wednesday. His wife had uploaded photos of the officers going through their house.

Warisan Secretary-General Loretto Padua Jr questioned the officers’ visit amid the political uncertainty in the country.

He said elected representatives aligned to Warisan, Upko, DAP and PKR were being “pressured” to cross over to the opposition.

Chief Minister Shafie Apdal had also previously accused the Perikatan Nasional government of trying to put political pressure on his elected representatives.


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