Friday, August 23, 2013

Suaram shocked by verdict, urges fresh probe

Human rights NGO Suaram is shocked over the Court of Appeal's decision to free two police officers of the charge of murdering Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu.

NONESuaram director Cynthia Gabriel (left) said that the "shocking verdict throws open the murder of Altantuya in 2006 and questions now abound as to who killed her?"

"It also throws open the question on how she was killed. How were the C4 explosives obtained? It's not like C4 can be obtained at 7-Eleven stores," she said.

Gabriel said this morning’s verdict called for nothing short of a full and fresh investigation into Altantuya's murder.

She added that it also raised questions whether the "brutal murder" was linked to the corruption allegations in the Scorpene submarine deal.

"Nothing short of an independent inquiry is needed," she stressed.

In the sensational trial that spanned six years, two former bodyguards of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak were convicted of murdering Altantuya with C4 explosives in a jungle in Shah Alam on Oct 19, 2006.

The ex-policemen - Special Action unit officers Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar - were freed by the Court of Appeal, which cited "misdirection" in their earlier trial.

Najib's close ally political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda was also charged with abetting the murder but was later acquitted without his defence being called.

Meanwhile, Najib, who had also been implicated in the case, had sworn on the Quran that he did not know Altantuya.

Suaram is party to a civil suit filed in a Paris court against French ship builder DCNS, which is being probed for allegedly paying illegal commissions to Malaysian officials involved in the purchase of two Scorpene class submarines.

~ Malaysiakini

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