Updates on Criminal Prosecution in 2021
No. Nature of Offence Offender(s) Facts of Case Date Charged

Outcome of Criminal Court Cases and Appeals

1.

Insider trading

Sreesanthan A/L Eliathamby

Sreesanthan was charged with seven counts of insider trading under section 188(2)(a) of the Capital Markets and Services Act (CMSA) and section 89E(2)(a) of the Securities Industry Act (SIA). He was alleged to have traded in the shares of four public listed companies while in possession of inside information relating to various corporate exercises, details of which are stated below:

  • Sime Darby Berhad while in possession of the proposed acquisition by Synergy Drive of companies within the Sime Darby, Guthrie and Golden Hope groups.
  • Maxis Communication Bhd while in possession of Maxis’ privatisation.
  • UEM World Berhad while in possession of the corporate restructuring exercise of the UEM group.

VADS Berhad while in possession of VADS’s proposed privatisation.

In one of criminal actions against Sreesanthan, he was charged on 20 July 2012 with 3 counts of insider trading under section 89E(2)(a) of the SIA for allegedly to have traded in the shares of Sime Darby Berhad while in possession of the proposed acquisition of companies within the Sime Darby, Guthrie and Golden Hope groups by Synergy Drive Sdn Bhd.

On 11 January 2021, the Sessions Court acquitted and discharged Sreesanthan at the end of the prosecution case.

On 22 January 2021, the SC filed an appeal against the decision of the Sessions Court to the High Court.

2. Failing to appear before an Investigating Officer of the SC in connection with an investigation. Ong Kar Kian

Ong Kar Kian (“Ong”) was charged with 3 counts of failing to comply with Orders issued by an SC Investigating Officer in 2018. The Orders required him to attend before the said Investigating Officer to have his statement recorded under section 32(8)(a) of Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLATFPUAA).

Ong who was the Group Accountant of Asia Media Group Berhad was required by the SC to assist in an ongoing investigation under the Capital Markets and Services Act 2007 and AMLATFPUAA.

Ong was charged at the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court on 19 February 2020.

On 10 December 2020, the Sessions Court convicted Ong on all 3 charges and sentenced him to:

  • A fine of RM75,000 (being RM25,000 per charge with 3 months imprisonment in default for each charge) and 1 day imprisonment per charge; and
  • A daily fine of RM1,500 for the 673 days he had failed to appear before an Investigating Officer of the SC as required amounting to RM1,009,500 (7 months imprisonment in default).

In total, Ong is required to pay a fine of RM1,084,500. Ong’s imprisonment terms are to run concurrently.

On 17 December 2020, Ong filed an appeal to the High Court against his sentence and conviction together with an application to stay the payment of his fine pending the results of his appeal.

On 8 January 2021, the High Court rejected Ong’s stay application and directed him to pay the fine within 14 days of the decision.

Ong’s appeal before the High Court is set for 23 February 2021.

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