Lebanese Jeweller Sues Ex-PM's Wife Over RM60 Million Worth Seized Jewellery

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KUALA LUMPUR, July 10 (Bernama) -- A Lebanese wholesale jewellery firm is suing Rosmah Mansor, demanding the wife of the former prime minister to return 44 pieces of jewellery allegedly sent to her for viewing or to pay the price for all the items totalling US$14.79 million or almost RM60 million.

Global Royalty Trading SAL based in Beirut, as the plaintiff, filed the suit through Messrs David Gurupatham and Koay at the High Court here on June 26, naming the wife of Najib Razak as the sole defendant.

The media obtained the document after the management of the case before Senior Assistant Registrar Siti Faraziana Zainuddin in chambers Tuesday in the presence of senior federal counsel S.Narkunavathy.

Speaking to reporters, Narkunavathy said the Attorney-General’s Chambers had applied to be an intermediary in the case on the grounds that the jewellery which were recently seized now belonged to the Government of Malaysia and that they were allegedly purchased using stolen money.

He said the court also ordered Rosmah to file a statement of defence by July 23 and that further case management was set on July 27.

In its statement of claim, Global Royalty, which is an international wholesale jeweller, claimed that Rosmah had been its long standing customer and that the firm would send consignments of jewellery to her on her demand. She would then evaluate or purchase the items of her choice which she would pay on her own or through a third party.

 The firm, which has been supplying jewellery for royalties and the rich and famous from all over the world,  claimed that the items not chosen would normally be returned and in certain situation, Rosmah would borrow the jewellery and return it to the plaintiff.

The plaintiff also claimed that the defendant would receive the jewellery personally or through its personnel/agent in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or Dubai.

The firm claimed that on Feb 10 this year, it had sent 44 pieces of jewellery, including a diamond necklace, earrings, rings, bracelets and a tiara, each worth between US$124,000 and US$925,000 to the defendant by hand through two of its agents.

The plaintiff said during the hand-over, the defendant also acknowledged and accepted the terms and conditions stated in the Memorandum No. 926 relating to the items.

Global Royalty claimed that Rosmah in a letter dated May 22 also confirmed and acknowledged receiving the items, but said the items were no longer in her custody as they had been seized and now under the custody of the Malaysian authority.

The firm claimed that all material times, the plaintiff was the owner of the jewellery and the ownership had never been transferred to the defendant.

Global Royalty is seeking a court declaration that the firm is the legal owner of the 44 pieces of jewellery, and an order stating that the ownership of the items was never transferred to the defendant.

It also seeks a mandatory order for Rosmah to provide the list of jewellery seized, an order for the jewellery to be returned or if not, Rosmah shall be held responsible for paying the price for the items totalling US$14.79 million (RM59.83 million).

-- BERNAMA