11 July 2024

KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia’s former youth and sports minister Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman was sentenced to seven years in jail and two strokes of the cane after he was found guilty of charges including misappropriating funds, the Star newspaper reported.

Syed Saddiq, 30, was also fined 10 million ringgit (US$2.1 million) by the country’s High Court in a decision announced on Thursday, the paper said. His other charges were abetting in a criminal breach of trust and money laundering, it said.

However, the court has allowed Syed Saddiq’s application to stay the execution of his sentence while pending appeal.

The Star reported that as he was awaiting the verdict, Sayed Saddiq said he put his trust in the country’s judicial system to clear his name.

“My fate lies in the hands of Allah, the judge and the judiciary. I put my trust in the judicial system to clear my name,” said Syed.

“I’ve been fighting this for a few years and I never bowed to anyone’s bribery or threats. I am confident that the truth will prevail, pray for me,” he told reporters.

Malaysian media reported that the conviction stemmed from the mishandling of funds belonging to Angkatan Bersatu Anak Muda (Armada), the Youth wing of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, where he previously served as its chief three years ago.

The court ruled that the defence failed to introduce sufficient doubt regarding the charges against Syed Saddiq, who currently holds the position of president of the Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (Muda) party.

The judge found Sayed Saddiq guilty of four charges, encompassing criminal breach of trust, fund misappropriation, and money laundering.