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Textbook verdict of Altantunya's trial

I refer to the Malaysiakini report Abdul Razak Baginda acquitted.

The acquittal of Abdul Razak Baginda in the High Court could only be seen as a classic revelation of the authenticity of the SMS texts exchange between Najib Razak and lawyer Shafee Abdullah.

It was clearly established in the texts that nothing untoward would happen to Razak and that brings us to the serious admonishment of the interference in the trial by those in the corridors of power.

If at all, the verdict firmly demonstrated the kangaroo nature of the trial with the outcome being revealed in textbook fashion.

Alarmingly, the verdict showed the rot infesting the Malaysian judiciary, the shabby prosecution by the AG's team and the highly questionable and incompetent investigations of the police.

It was hard to fathom's the court decision in asking for the two police officers Inspector Azila and Sergeant Sirul, who allegedly are carrying the burden of the murder, to make their defence while a highly politically connected accused was released.

Why would Azila and Sirul want to execute the Mongolian lass Altantunya Shaariibuu when they had not seen or even known her? If the duo were indeed the murderers, they could have just taken snipers to take her out instead of using C4 explosives to grisly blow her into pieces which no jigsaw expert in the world could reassemble.

Instead, the two unlucky police officers had to conceived a clinical and laborious approach because they were probably ordered to leave behind no trace of the murder. Unless Azila and Sirul were insane, there was no logical explanation for their gruesome elimination of Altantuya especially when the lady was a nobody to them.

Why was there was no consideration that the duo, being elite police commandos, had been ordered by some higher-up people to ‘finish off’ Altantuya? Without orders from their superiors, Azila and Sirul wouldn't have even lifted a gun let alone underwent the strenuous process of obtaining C4 to disintegrate Altantunya.

The whole trial could only be aptly described as a mockery and now the whole world can't help thinking of the partiality of the Malaysian judiciary, that it is subservient to those in the corridors of power and proned to manipulation by the political masters.

The original criminal prosecution team, who had put months into their preparation of the trial, was replaced at the 11th hour by a civil prosecution team. Where else could such a dubious if not unwarranted switch taken place?

If Razak had been acquitted, then why didn't the court make known the fact that obviously someone had given orders to the two police officers to kill Altantunya and that the murder was not a unilateral decision by the duo?

The original judge for the trial - who was more senior and experienced - was also replaced at the last minute by a junior judge. If this is not interference by an invisible hand, then what is?

The gathering of evidence by the police was so shoddy and inconsistent that it seemed that their acts were deliberate to make it easier for the defence to punch gaping holes into the prosecution witnesses’ testimony. Needless to say, their testimonies were just as farcical.

The prosecution line of questioning had been so inconclusive and lacking in substance that one couldn't help interpreting it as a mock prosecution designed to offer ample opportunities for the defence to tear their questioning into shreds.

As the summary of the judge said (as expected), Razak's counsel had no problem in espousing the innocence of his client. No one needed a Cambridge-trained lawyer (Razak's counsel) to cast serious doubts on the police and prosecutors. Even an average lawyer could do it confidently for Razak.

The judge mentioned that there was nothing prima facie established by the prosecution. What other conclusion could the judge deliver when the prosecution and police testimonies were so flawed and contradictory?

Law-abiding citizens will have to ask themselves whether Barisan Nasional is serious about reforming the judiciary, beefing up the prosecution and overhauling the abusive and incompetent police.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is fighting a losing battle if he is not doomed to fail if he still aspires to reform the judiciary before his exit next March.

His intentions may be positive but his Umno ministerial colleagues and Umno warlords are staunchly resisting his moves.