Public Bank Berhad fails to submit full investigation report – 20 pages removed and excluded

KUALA LUMPUR — Lawyers acting for National Feedlot Corporation Sdn Bhd, its group of companies and its chairman (plaintiffs), have today raised a complaint on Public Bank Berhad to the Kuala Lumpur High Court for failing to fully comply with a discovery order for its investigation papers on a banking leak.

Twenty pages had been removed and excluded from a 45-page transcript of a domestic inquiry investigating how confidential banking information of customers were leaked by its employee. The plaintiffs believe there is likely key information in the missing 20 pages, almost half the report.

The court had on 13 April this year allowed for the discovery order to compel Public Bank to disclose all domestic investigation papers arising from the disclosure of confidential banking information of National Feedlot Corporation Sdn Bhd and its group of companies including the personal bank accounts of all its directors and chairman.

Twenty-five bank accounts and eight collateral accounts were leaked and disclosed.

The discovery was sought as the documents were relevant to the action and were and have been in the possession, custody or power of Public Bank Berhad.

Judge Datuk John Louis O’Hara had granted the order in chambers after hearing the application in open court. The order was given under Order 24 Rule 12 of the Rules of Court 2012.

Public Bank was given 21 days to fulfill the discovery order but failed to fully comply satisfactorily.

National Feedlot Corporation Sdn Bhd (NFCorp), National Meat & Livestock Corporation Sdn Bhd, Agroscience Industries Sdn Bhd, Real Food Company Sdn Bhd and NFCorp chairman Datuk Dr Mohamad Salleh Ismail had sought for all documents and transcripts of the domestic enquiry held in respect to one of Public Bank Berhad’s employees Johari Mohamad.

Johari had also been charged separately under the Banking and Financial Institutions Act, 1989 (BAFIA) for the offence.

On 22 May 2012, the plaintiffs had filed a suit against Public Bank Berhad. The plaintiffs stated that their business, reputation and credibility had suffered irreparable loss and damage as a result of the bank’s security breach in exposing the confidential banking information of its bank accounts at Public Bank Berhad.

Datuk Salleh and the NFCorp group were represented by counsels Tan Sri Dr Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, Datuk M David Morais, Al Firdaus Shahrul Naing, Sara Ann Chay Sue May and Syed Ismat Syed Muhamad.