Home » Former PM Najib Denies Influencing Sirul, Calls for Truth to Prevail in Altantuya Murder Case
Featured Global News Malaysia News Politics

Former PM Najib Denies Influencing Sirul, Calls for Truth to Prevail in Altantuya Murder Case

Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has denied assertions that he had exerted interference or influence over ex-policeman Sirul Azhar Umar, who was convicted of the 2006 murder of Mongolian woman Altantuya Shaariibu.

In a statement issued by his legal firm Shafee & Co, Najib categorically denied any allegations of seeking to influence or silence Sirul.

In fact, he urged Sirul to be brave and to disclose any information he may have regarding the purported mastermind, in the interest of uncovering the truth, transparency and justice.

“As the current Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Razarudin Husain had pointed out, Sirul had been given the opportunity to defend himself in line with Malaysian laws and the constitution, and that his claim in his recent interview was never raised in any court that heard his case — from the High Court to the Court of Appeal and finally to the Federal Court.

“In this regard, our client states that given that Sirul was faced with the death penalty throughout his trials, he should have raised his recent allegations to the courts if the same had merit, but yet had not done so,” read the statement today.

Najib’s statement comes after Aljazeera English’s 101 East programme aired an exclusive interview yesterday with Sirul in Canberra, Australia, said to be his first media appearance since his release from detention more than a week ago.

The now 51-year-old convicted former police commando had fled to Australia to escape a death sentence in Malaysia for the murder of Altantuya.

The statement further added that Najib, as their client, requests the current Malaysian government to engage with the Australian authorities to facilitate Sirul’s extradition to Malaysia, ensuring a comprehensive investigation into his claims.

“To support this, our client suggests that the Malaysian government might offer assurances against the imposition of the death penalty to facilitate the broader objective of truth and justice.

“While our client retains all legal rights and remedies in this matter against Sirul, Al- Jazeera and its reporter Mary Ann Jolley, he remains steadfast in his denial of any involvement in the tragic demise of Altantuya Shaaribuu through such a heinous crime,” read the statement.

The statement also stressed that Naiib has been conclusively exonerated of any involvement in the murder case.

“This exoneration has been affirmed by relevant authorities, including investigations restarted post-14th general election (GE14) in 2018 and a reaffirmation by the High Court, Court of Appeal, and ultimately by way of a substantive appeal in the Federal Court that was comprehensively heard on its merits.

“In a summary of these court proceedings, at no point of time in any of these courts was our client implicated by either the prosecution or defence,” it read, adding that convicted police Special Action Unit (UTK) commando Azilah Hadri’s attempt to provide a narrative implicating Najib also lacked substance and merit in the Federal Court in 2020.

On a related matter, the statement also pointed out that Sirul and Azilah were never the dedicated bodyguards for Najib, when he was the deputy prime minister and also defence minister.

It clarified that both convicted policemen were from a pool of bodyguards that were rotated between the top leaderships in the then Cabinet.

“In fact, both men were arrested for the first time after they arrived at the airport from the United Kingdom after they had performed their duties to protect former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi,” read the statement.

In Aljazeera English’s 101 East interview, Sirul claimed that he was made a scapegoat and was caught in a political game where he was paid a large sum of money by a lawyer to exonerate Najib from any links to the brutal murder in 2006.

He claimed not to know the original source of the money when asked in the interview.

Sirul was released from Australia’s detention centre last week after spending almost a decade inside.

His release, alongside 91 others, was seen by human rights lawyers as a landmark ruling that ended a two-decade immigration law that allowed the Australian authorities to detain foreign citizens indefinitely who cannot be deported back.

The Australian government has a policy against deporting anyone to a country where they would face the death penalty.

Both Sirul and Azilah were sentenced to death in 2009 for the October 2006 murder of Altantuya in a gruesome case that garnered national interest and fuelled political conspiracy theories that remain popular to this day.

In 2007, Altantuya’s father Shaariibuu Setev and his wife Altantsetseg Sanjaa, as well as two of their grandsons Mungunshagai Bayarjargal and Altanshagai Munkhtulga filed a RM100 million lawsuit against Azilah and Sirul.

Sirul and Azilah succeeded in overturning their conviction at the Court of Appeal in 2013, but the Federal Court in 2015 restored their conviction and death sentence.

However, Sirul managed to flee to Australia in his effort to escape the death sentence in Malaysia.

Source : Malay Mail