On 2nd August 2017, the lawyers from the legal firm of Carter-Ruck and barrister Jacob Dean, who are representing Dato Seri Tuan Guru Abdul Hadi Awang (TGHA) for the civil suit that he brought against Clare Rewcastle Brown (CRB), in the London Courts, attended court in London for the Case Management hearing.
The civil suit was in relation to an article she wrote in August 2016, which would clearly have been understood to allege, falsely, that TGHA had received bribes from Prime Minister Najib to the tune of RM90 million.
This case management hearing was to determine an attempt by CRB to force TGHA to deposit money with the court as security, in the event he was to lose the case and would have to pay CRB’s legal costs, which she estimates to be around £800,000 (or close to RM5 million) in total for the whole hearing till completion.
Carter-Ruck successfully argued, assisted by a legal opinion from a law expert in Malaysia, that there exist well-established laws between the UK and Malaysia that allows for CRB to claim the costs through the law courts in Malaysia, incurring a cost of not more than RM80,000. Based on his confidence on the case from the beginning, TGHA had already offered to deposit this amount with the court, which was sufficient and uncontroversial.
CRB’s arguments that she cannot successfully bring a legal suit against TGHA in Malaysia as the judiciary, government and the Prime Minister are corrupted and are complicit with him was rejected by the court. As the court observed, these serious allegations were not supported by any evidence from CRB whatsoever, despite having months to provide some.
The Court made very clear that, absent with any evidence, the court cannot accept that another sovereign state that has good ties and relationship with the UK is corrupt.
The court accepted the offer by TGHA to pay the RM80,000 deposit.
In recognition of the flawed basis of her application, CRB was ordered to pay TGHA two thirds of his costs of the exercise. She has to pay £15,000 to TGHA now, with the quantum of the balance to be assessed by the Court in due course.
The court also ordered CRB to submit her defence into court within 21 days so that TGHA can proceed with this case and she cannot continue to prevaricate.
A request to appeal this judgment by CRB’s lawyers was disallowed by the court.
This is a very positive development for TGHA in his bid to clear his name of the allegations by CRB and Sarawak Report in their article.
TGHA would like to extend his congratulations, gratitude and appreciation to Adam Tudor and his legal team at Carter-Ruck, London and in Malaysia.
TGHA also would like to extend his gratitude to members of PAS and the members of public who have been supporting him in this very difficult case.
TGHA was also informed by Carter-Ruck that the Malaysian High Commission in London sent representatives to attend, who informed Carter-Ruck that they are there to observe the proceedings as many political allegations were made against the Prime Minister of Malaysia, the government of Malaysia and the judiciary in Malaysia by CRB in documents that she is filing into court.
DR AHMAD SAMSURI MOKHTAR
PAS President’s Political Secretary