18 September 2018

Deepak Jaikishan is a Malaysian Indian businessman. He comes from a family involved in property development and investment. Under his leadership, both his Carpet Raya Sdn Bhd and Tek Holding Sdn Bhd (the property development and investment company), flourished. Bursa Malaysia notes that from 2000 to 2009, Deepak had completed property investment projects totalling about RM3 billion. Deepak has had close ties with the family of Najib, the former Malaysian Prime Minister.

Deepak has lodged a police report against his former lawyer, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, and former Tabung Haji chairman, Datuk Seri Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim. Malaysiakini, reported that Deepak had claimed the two had interfered in a suit filed by the widow of private investigator P Balasubramanian regarding the murder of Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu. Deepak was named as a defendant in this suit. Deepak claimed that he was forced to engage Shafee as his lawyer upon the instructions of former prime minister Najib.

Balasubramanian’s widow A. Santamil Selvi filed a suit for suffering intentional harm as a result of their exile in India following the statutory declaration in relation to the murder of Altantuya.

Santamil, who is also acting for the estate of Balasubramanian and their three children filed the suit on July 13, 2017.  Santamil Selvi and her three children sued nine people over the supposed conspiracy. The nine defendants were Deepak, Najib’s younger brothers Datuk Ahmad Johari Abdul Razak and Datuk Mohd Nazim Abdul Razak, senior lawyer Tan Sri Cecil Abraham, his son counsel Sunil Abraham, Commissioner of Oath Zainal Abidin Muhayat and lawyer M. Arulampalam. The court dismissed the case on the grounds that the plaintiffs had no right to file the suit.

Deepak claimed that Shafee and Azeez had prevented him from being questioned in the cross-examination over his contradictory statements in three instances – March 19, March 27 and April 13. Deepak claimed Shafee had forced him to be warded into a government hospital (on March 19), a private hospital (on March 27) and a private hospital in New Delhi (on April 13). He claimed he had audio and visual recordings to show that Shafee and Azeez had tried to interfere with the justice system.

What we see here is Shafee’s invisible hands manipulating evidence in a murder trial. Shafee’s intervention in this case shows Najib’s involvement.  Shafee is Najib’s defence lawyer. Deepak’s presence in the case shows involvement of Rosmah Mansor, wife of Najib. Deepak came to know her as a long-time supplier of carpets to her.

Deepak is widely seen as a central figure behind Balasubramanian’s retraction of a statutory declaration on July 4, 2008, over the murder of Altantuya. Balasubramanian in his statutory declaration said Abdul Razak Baginda told him that Najib had asked him (Razak Baginda) “to look after” Altantuya because he did not want her to harass him now that he was (then) deputy prime minister. That statutory declaration showed that Razak Baginda said he was introduced to Altantuya by Najib at a diamond exhibition in Singapore. His sworn statutory declaration also shows that Razak Baginda had told him that Altantuya had wanted US$500,000 commission for her role in submarine deal in Paris; and that Najib, Razak Baginda and Altantuya all had dinner together in Paris. It is not clear why Altantuya was present in the negotiations as the executives of the submarine dockyard spoke English.

Both Deepak and Balasubramanian are unreliable witnesses as they made and retracted several contradictory statutory declarations. Balasubramanian was a private investigator who was hired by Razak Baginda to prevent Altantuya from harassing Najib and Razak Baginda. Balasubramanian meticulously recorded every move he made during his service as private investigator. Although he was said to have died from heart failure, one cannot rule out foul play.

Malaysia purchased Scorpene-class submarines and one Agosta-class submarine from French naval dockyards unit DCN, which is linked to French defence group Thales in 2002. At that time Najib was defence minister and he oversaw the deal worth $1.18 billion. Abdul Razak Baginda, an adviser to Najib was said to have accompanied Najib for the submarine negotiations. DCN agreed to pay €30 million to Thales’ Asian unit and another company, Terasasi, whose main shareholder was Razak Baginda, received an equivalent sum for what was billed as consultancy work, but which investigators believe was really a front for kickbacks.

Last year four defence industry executives have been charged in France. Razak Baginda was also charged in France on 18 July 2017 with complicity in corruption and misappropriation of corporate assets. The French investigators are also looking into allegations that €114 million was paid to a shell company, Perimekar, controlled time by Razak Baginda’s wife.

Jasbir Singh Chahl, Terasasi director, in a statement issued to Bernama, stated the contract between the Malaysian Government and Perimekar Sdn Bhd for a value equivalent of 115 million Euro was for defined scope of works, and provision of such services was within commercial norms. He added that Perimekar among other things, provided services for the training of Royal Malaysian Navy personnel, inclusive of the provision of accommodation and necessary services for them and their families in France and Spain for a period of six years. Chahl said that Perimekar Sdn Bhd was owned by the Armed Forces Fund, Boustead Holdings Sdn Bhd and K. S. Ombak Laut Sdn Bhd. Jasbir Singh Chahl is a close ally of Razak Baginda. Jasbir Singh Chahl runs an Indian restaurant, Gills, in the Damansara Heights neighbourhood where Abdul Razak Baginda used to live. Suaram director Cynthia Gabriel said that Jasbir was the first Malaysian to be subpoenaed as witness for the Scorpene purchase case going on at Tribunal De Grande Instance in Paris. Suaram, an NGO, had filed a complaint against DCNS in a French Court in April 2012.

If as claimed by Jasbir Singh Chahl, the contract was between Malaysian Government and Perimekar Sdn Bhd, the fees of 115 million Euros should have been paid be Malaysian Government and not by French company Armaris.

Balasubramanian also claimed in his declaration that on the day Razak Baginda was arrested for abetting in Altantuya’s murder, Razak Baginda showed him Najib’s SMS which supposedly said: “I am seeing the IGP at 11am today…matter will be solved…be cool.” But barely 24 hours after making it public, Balasubramanian retracted his statutory declaration, and made another statutory declaration, saying that he had made the first one “under duress”. This might have been due to Deepak’s intervention mentioned above.

Prior to the 14th General Elections, Altantuya’s murder case was closed. After Dr. Mahathir Mohamed became prime minister, Altantuya’s father requested him to reopen the case. Mongolian president has also urged Malaysia to reopen 2006 Altantuya murder case.  Shaariibuu, the father of Altantuya, lodged a police report on Wednesday (20 June 2018) to jump start the process of reopening investigations into the case, nearly 12 years after she was killed in Malaysia.

In the murder trial two police officers, Azilah and Sirul, were convicted of the murder. Convicted cop Azilah is currently on death row at Kajang prison, while Sirul fled to Australia before sentencing and is now held in an Australian immigration detention centre.

According to Shaariibuu, Musa Safri was the person who ordered the killing of Altantuya. Musa Safri was the former aide-de-camp for ex-prime minister Najib. Shaariibuu’s lawyer, Ramkarpal Singh, said that Musa Safri played a very significant role and that he should have been called as a prosecution witness. He said that it was a glaring omission on the part of the prosecutor not to have called him as a witness.

Altantuya had been forcibly taken from outside the home of her alleged lover Abdul Razak Baginda and was shot dead and her body blown up by military-grade C4 explosives in Shah Alam in 2006.

French authorities are conducting investigations concerning bribery allegations. They will not investigate Altantuya’s murder as the crime was not committed in the French soil.