KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 20): Former Asian International Arbitration Centre (AIAC) director Datuk Prof N Sundra Rajoo has filed an application to expunge various paragraphs of former attorney-general (AG) Tommy Thomas’ affidavit in support to strike out his suit.
The former AIAC director in his application filed in early December this year said he is seeking to expunge five paragraphs of Thomas’ affidavit in support.
In Sundra Rajoo's affidavit in support of the application sighted by theedgemarkets.com, he said Thomas’ affidavit contained material that is “scandalous” as it attacked a Federal Court ruling.
The Federal Court had ruled that Sundra Rajoo enjoyed immunity from criminal prosecution in respect of acts done in his capacity as a director of AIAC.
However, Sundra Rajoo said Thomas has attacked the Federal Court’s decision, as the former AG, in his affidavit in support, took the view that the ex-arbitration director does not enjoy such immunity and opined that such a proposition violates Article 8 of the Federal Constitution — all persons are equal before the law — and is therefore unconstitutional.
Meanwhile, Sundra Rajoo also asserted that Thomas also made serious allegations against him and his wife grounded only by summarising Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) findings, based on the commission’s preliminary investigation without any evidence.
In the same application, Sundra Rajoo also seeks to expunge a paragraph of MACC officer Hasmizzy Md Hasim’s affidavit, as he had made the same allegations as Thomas.
The aforementioned reasons are the grounds on which Sundra Rajoo has forwarded the application, seeking it to be allowed — the paragraphs be expunged — with costs.
The next case management before the court has been fixed on Jan 3, 2022. This was confirmed by Sundra Rajoo’s lawyer TJ Lee when contacted by theedgemarkets.com.
The former AIAC director was initially slapped with three criminal breach of trust charges in March 2019, involving AIAC’s funds amounting to RM1.01 million.
The charges were dropped after the High Court and the Federal Court in April this year ruled that as AIAC director, Sundra Rajoo has the privilege of immunity from criminal proceedings and that the AG did not have “absolute and unfettered discretion under Article 145(3) to institute, conduct or discontinue any proceedings for criminal offences”.
Subsequently, in October this year, the former AIAC director filed a suit against Thomas, former MACC chief commissioner Datuk Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull, the government and 10 others for misfeasance in public office and malicious prosecution and false imprisonment.
Sundra Rajoo said that as the AIAC director, he enjoyed immunity as stipulated under the International Organisations (Privileges and Immunities) Act 1982, and alleged that he was wrongfully arrested by the MACC on Nov 20, 2018, and was forced to resign from his position on Thomas’ instructions which led to the appointment of the late Vinayak Pradhan to replace him.
He further claimed continued harassment and intimidation against him and his family in 2019, leading to the criminal charges made against him.
In the lawsuit, the former AIAC director is seeking special damages of RM3.75 million, general, aggravated damages and costs.
Thomas and the 12 other defendants seek to quash the suit claiming that it was unreasonable, frivolous and an abuse of the court process.