In landmark verdict, Najib Razak becomes the first Malaysian leader to be convicted of corruption.
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has been sentenced to serve up to 12 years in jail after a court in Kuala Lumpur found him guilty of corruption in the first of several cases linked to the alleged theft of billions of dollars from the state fund, 1MDB.
The ruling on Tuesday makes Najib the first Malaysian leader to be convicted of corruption.
Judge Mohamad Nazlan Ghazali found the former prime minister guilty on all seven charges filed against him over his role in diverting an estimated 42 million ringgit ($9.8m) from SRC International, a unit of 1MDB, into his personal bank accounts.
“I find that the prosecution has successfully proven its case beyond a reasonable doubt. I therefore find the accused guilty and convict the accused on all seven charges,” the judge said.
Najib was ordered to pay a fine of 210 million ringgit ($49m), and given 12 years in jail on one count of abuse of power, 10 years each for three counts of criminal breach of trust and 10 years each for three counts of money laundering.
But Judge Mohamad ordered the sentences to run concurrently, meaning the former prime minister will serve 12 years in prison.
Najib was not taken to jail immediately, however, as the judge issued a stay order on the execution of the sentence. He has previously said he would appeal any guilty verdicts.
The conviction comes just six days after the High Court ordered Najib to pay the government as much as 1.69 billion ringgit ($400m) in unpaid taxes and penalties, covering the years from 2011 to 2017.