Bank tellers depose in judiciary couple case

Fadley Faisal

The prosecution yesterday concluded its evidence from Bank A in the case against Ramzidah binti Pehin Datu Kesuma Diraja Colonel (Rtd) Haji Abdul Rahman and Haji Nabil Daraina bin Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin, in the High Court.

Jonathan Caplan, QC read out a statement by the Head of Collection and Recovery Department of Bank A, which oversees the Bankruptcy Unit.

In her statement, the witness confirmed surrendering three letters to the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB), which were received from Ramzidah to inform Bank A that the cash withdrawn from the Official Receiver’s account was placed in a fixed deposit account.

However, she stated that over the period when she was head of the department since 2010, Bank A had never received any instructions from any Deputy Official Receiver (DOR) or the court to open a fixed deposit account under their name or under the name of the persons under the Receiving Order in Bank A.

She also said that to her knowledge, no such fixed deposit account under any of the DORs has existed in Bank A.

The trial continued with the prosecution producing bank tellers from Bank B, who gave evidence regarding deposit transactions processed into the defendants’ joint account which involved the use of BND10,000 notes.

One of the witnesses recalled that the account holder came in person, and that he had noted down the customer’s identification card number and date of birth.

The prosecution’s case is that the information noted down corresponds to that of Haji Nabil Daraina.

During cross-examination, Simon Farrell, QC argued that the witness could not have remembered who came to deposit the money, as it was an incident which occurred in 2015.

He further suggested that the information noted down by the witness could have been from the system, as opposed to looking at a physical identification card.

The witness however maintained that transactions involving large amounts will usually require a viewing of the identification card.

Evidence of Compliance Officers from Bank A, Bank B and Bank C were also heard in court, where each officer described their duties which involved reporting the use of BND10,000 bank notes that were issued and received in the ordinary course of business to the Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam (AMBD).

According to the reports submitted by Bank A, 194 pieces of BND10,000 bank notes were issued to Ramzidah over the period between 2012 and 2017.

Between November 2012 and December 2017, the report showed that Bank B received 49 pieces of BND10,000 notes from Ramzidah and 52 pieces of BND10,000 notes from Haji Nabil Daraina.

The prosecution also played two audio callbacks by Bank B, associated with high-value telegraphic transfer transactions made by Haji Nabil Daraina.

The callbacks were to confirm Haji Nabil Daraina’s identity in verifying a telegraphic transfer instruction made online for two transfers of BND45,000 to Ramzidah’s Bank B account in the United Kingdom on June 15, 2014, and September 1, 2014.

Justice Gareth John Lugar-Mawson adjourned the hearing to continue today.

Caplan and Deputy Public Prosecutors Hajah Suhana binti Haji Sudin, Hajah Suriana binti Haji Radin, Dayangku Didi-Nuraza binti Pengiran Haji Abdul Latiff and Muhammad Qamarul Affyian bin Abdul Rahman appeared for the

Public Prosecutor. Farrell and Sheikh Noordin Sheikh Mohammad represented the defendants.