Police Probe Into Weaknesses Of Murder Case Investigation.
Perak Police Chief Datuk Aziz Bulat said he had directed the State Crime Investigation Department Chief, SAC II Patrick Jiges Sijore, to lead the probe whose findings will be submitted to the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan as soon as possible.
Abdul Aziz said the investigation was crucial to prevent the police's credibility from being tarnished, and that the public will not have a negative perception on the force. The probe will also involve reviewing investigation papers even though the case had been closed, he said. "We will also study how the failure occurred in court, whether it was the handling of the case or evidence, and we will improve them to prevent similar occurrences," he said.
Musa had said Thursday that he wanted to know immediately whether the weaknesses in the murder investigation were done on purpose to make the case appear weak in court.
The High Court here last Wednesday acquitted Azman, 26, and four of his friends from the charge of killing an engineering student, Mohd Hosni Fadzli Mohd Amin, 21, in 2003. In acquitting the five, Judge Datuk V.T Singham said the police investigation on the case had raised a lot of doubts, while the prosecution was weak. Singham had outlined several of the glaring weaknesses to the case, and had regarded it as the most careless case ever handled by the prosecution. Among the weaknesses were the police's lack of urgency to the crime scene to conduct forensic tests; the autopsy was done by a hospital assistant and not a pathologist; and the prosecutor's refusal to name another suspect who was still at large even though the person was a prime suspect.
Abdul Aziz said revision of the investigation papers would allow the police to detect whether the weaknesses were intentional. He said the case has been closed and no new testimonies can be made. The Royal Malaysia Police discipline committee is expected to summon all the investigating officers of the case soon to get their statements.
Meanwhile, the Attorney-General had filed an appeal on the Ipoh High Court's decision on the case. (Bernama)
***** Surprising how a very strong word from the top man, the IGP, can change opinions within a day. Only yesterday the Perak CPO, Aziz Bulat was singing a very different tune and said that "the police had done all they could to ensure a strong prosecution case!" This was clearly a reflex defence of not only his men but his leadership or lack of it personally. Now, eating humble pie he has no choice but to accept that things have gone awry and those responsible must own up why the investigation and prosecution were so hopelessly shoddy.
It is hoped that the new investigation will shed light on the murderers as well as the culprits in the police force who attempted to prevent the criminals from being punished by the courts.
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