GEORGE TOWN: The Penang High Court has fixed a new date of March 15 for case management of the graft trial involving Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and businesswoman Phang Li Khoon.

High Court Judge Datuk Hadhariah Syed Ismail set the new date after the case was brought up for case management today.

The date was fixed pending the trial and decision of the Court of Appeal on the constitutionality of Section 62 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009.

RSN Rayer appeared for Lim, while Datuk V. Sithambaram represented Phang.

A three-man prosecution team led by deputy public prosecutor Abdul Rashid Daud appeared at court.

Neither Lim nor Phang was present at today’s proceedings.

On June 30 last year, Lim claimed trial to two counts of corruption.

For the first count, he is alleged to have used his position as a civil servant to obtain gratification for himself and his wife by approving an application by Magnificent Emblem Sdn Bhd to convert agricultural land into residential land, while chairing a state Planning Committee meeting on July 18, 2014.

He was charged under Section 23 of the MACC Act 2009, which carries a maximum 20 year jail sentence, and a fine of up to five times the amount of the bribe, or RM10,000, whichever is higher.

For the second count, he was charged with using his position to buy a house at Jalan Pinhorn from Phang for RM2.8 million, which was below the property's market value of RM4.27 million, on July 28 last year.

He was charged under Section 165 of the Penal Code, which provides for two years’ jail, a fine, or both, if convicted.

Phang claimed trial to abetment under Section 109 of the Penal Code, read together with Section 165.

Several trial dates were set for between March and July, but these have been vacated pending the outcome on the constitutionality of the Act.

468 reads
The Penang High Court has fixed a new date of March 15 for case management of the graft trial involving Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and businesswoman Phang Li Khoon. (Pix by DANIAL SAAD)