Friday, August 21, 2015

Task force officer sacked from A-G’s Chambers, loses PR

Jessica Gurmeet Kaur’s friends at the Petaling Jaya police headquarters on the day of her arrest on August 1, 2015. Jessica was the legal officer in the special task force probing into 1MDB. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, August 20, 2015.
Jessica Gurmeet Kaur’s friends at the Petaling Jaya police headquarters on the day of her arrest on August 1, 2015. Jessica was the legal officer in the special task force probing into 1MDB. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, August 20, 2015
By Malaysian Insider

Jessica Gurmeet Kaur, the legal officer held in a probe into 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) leaks, has been fired from the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) and her permanent residency revoked today with officers waiting to escort her to Singapore, sources said. Jessica, a Singaporean, also had her police bail revoked last Friday and her children's residency permits have also been cancelled, sources told The Malaysian Insider. A lawyer, who declined to be named, confirmed that Jessica's service with the AGC was terminated last week but added that he had no knowledge of the deportation order. 
"I am surprised by the turn of events and expected the Malaysian authorities to keep her here as she has a lot of confidential information," said the lawyer. He said Jessica would not be subject to Malaysian law such as the Official Secrets Act once out of the country. "We will have to wait and see what happens after this," he added.
On August 1, Jessica was arrested along with former Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission adviser, Tan Sri Rashpal Singh, and held for a day for questioning in connection with leaks into the 1MDB probe. They were later released on bail after police recorded their statements. Jessica was part of the special government task force established to probe into 1MDB and the RM2.6 billion channelled into Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak's personal bank accounts. She headed the special task force secretariat, administration and finance department. Rashpal, who is a former member of the MACC advisory board, was said to have met Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown in London. MACC director of strategic communications Datuk Rohaizad Yaakob had issued a statement last month saying that Rashpal had no access to the agency's ongoing probe as his tenure as a board member had ended in February. 
The Malaysian Insider understands that a team of officers is waiting outside Jessica's condominium in Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. She is expected to be escorted to the border. Jessica, however, is not at home. Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar told The Malaysian Insider that police were not told to escort her to the border. "It is not my men now who are outside the condo now," Khalid said. Apart from Rashpal, seven MACC officers have been called in by the police, the first was DPP Ahmad Shazalee Abdul Khairi on August 1 and the last, MACC's special operations deputy director Tan Kang Sai on August 5. The probe by the MACC was in relation to SRC International over a RM4 billion loan from Retirement Fund Inc (KWAP) to 1MDB and the subsequent transfer of RM42 million into Najib's personal bank accounts. The police have been probing MACC officers with regard to leaks from this investigation under Section 124B of the Penal Code for "activity detrimental to parliamentary democracy", but it has sparked allegations that this was an attempt to thwart the commission’s probe. 
Khalid had on August 9 said police would postpone the investigations into the MACC's alleged leak of information which was published in the Sarawak Report portal. He said although more people would be called to facilitate the investigation, the case was postponed to avoid numerous assumptions and public perception. "With a variety of assumptions and perceptions having been made, I have ordered for the temporary postponement of the case," he had said. 
Bank Negara governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz had on August 13 revealed that seven officers were also questioned by police over leaks related to the 1MDB probe. Zeti said the officers have given their full cooperation to the police but she declined to reveal who they were, when they were questioned and which section of the bank they worked in. She also said the central bank has completed its investigation on bank transactions related to 1MDB and has submitted these papers to the AGC. 

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