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Azilah not hired killer, says lawyer (Updated)

(Updated 9:21pm, 16 Feb 2009)

SHAH ALAM, 16 Feb 2009: Lawyer Datuk Hazman Ahmad representing Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri in the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder trial today stressed that the first accused was not a hired killer or gangster involved in secret societies.

Hazman said Azilah was a police officer who just helped out on the request of a senior officer and was not promised a promotion due to Altantuya’s death.

“Police officers have discretion to assist in any situations although no police report is made. The first accused had nothing to gain from causing the death of the deceased. More so the first accused did not know the deceased.

“There is no evidence that proves that if the deceased was killed, the first accused would be promoted, get payment or reward. The circumstantial evidence is very weak. There is no direct evidence that the first accused had committed the murder,” Hazman said while submitting at the end of the defence’s case.

He said throughout the trial there were no eye-witnesses or Azilah’s DNA at the scene of the crime, adding there was no evidence that grenades and explosives were taken by Azilah to commit murder.

“The duties of the first accused also did not require the use of explosives or bombs as at the time of the incident he was only given duties to protect VVIPs and VIPs and in those duties bombs and explosives are not needed,” Hazman said.

He also submitted that the prosecution had failed to prove that Azilah took Altantuya to the scene as there was contradiction in the evidence of the witness from Celcom.

Before ending his submission, Hazman asked the High Court to acquit Azilah as the prosecution had not proven its case.

Meanwhile, Cpl Sirul Azhar Umar’s counsel, Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin, submitted that his client should be acquitted or the court declare a mistrial and for the case to be retried with Sirul, Azilah and political analyst Abdul Razak Abdullah Baginda, who was cleared earlier of an abetment charge.

Kamarul said it was a mistrial as a material witness, DSP Musa Safri, was not called.

Azilah, 32, and Sirul, 36, both UTK operatives are accused of murdering Altantuya, 28, in Mukim Bukit Raja between 10pm on 19 Oct 2006 and 1am the following day.

On 31 Oct last year, the court acquitted and Razak, 48, of abetting them in Kuala Lumpur between 9.54am on 18 Oct 2006 and 9.45pm the next day without calling him to enter defence. — Bernama

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