KOTA KINABALU, Sept 8 — Security personnel had no reference of how a suspect looked like when they carried out a raid to arrest the man at Kampung Sri Jaya in Simunul, Semporna on March 2 last year, the High Court here was told today.
Bukit Aman Special Branch (SB) officer ASP Mohamad Hasnal Jamil said the surveillance team assigned to track down an individual known as “Imam Tua”, were unable to take a photograph of the suspect, allegedly connected to the Lahad Datu intrusion in February last year.
However, he said surveillance on three others, who were also suspected to have been involved in the intrusion, managed to produce photographs of the trio who were later apprehended and charged.
The trio, who are among 30 accused on trial, are Salib Akhmad Emali, Julham Rashid and Al Wazir Osman alias Abdul who face the death sentence if found guilty of waging war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
They are also charged with being members of a terrorist group, an offence punishable with life imprisonment and a fine, while Salib Akhmad faces a third charge of recruiting members for a terrorist group.
Mohamad Hasnal agreed with counsel Datuk N. Sivananthan that he did not know Imam Tua’s real name during the course of the Bukit Aman SB investigations in Semporna.
Sivananthan: Do you agree with me that Julham, Salib Akhmad and Al Wazir went out in public and could be far more easily photographed than the elusive Imam Tua?
Mohamad Hasnal: Yes.
Sivananthan: Did you try to ask the residents of Kampung Sri Jaya who Imam Tua was?
Mohamad Hasnal: No.
Mohamad Hasnal told the court that the marine police carried out a sea blockade near Kampung Sri Jaya to stop individuals from escaping from the village while the (police) raid was carried out.
He also said the village residents did not seem to find it strange that the 57 police personnel, some of whom were in full police uniform and carrying rifles, were entering the village.
Thirty accused, comprising 27 Filipinos and three local residents, are being tried in the case, in which some are facing multiple charges of being members of a terrorist group or waging war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, recruiting members for a terrorist group or wilfully harbouring individuals they knew to be members of a terrorist group.
They allegedly committed the offences between February 12 and April 10 last year.
The hearing before Justice Stephen Chung at the Sabah Prisons Department continues tomorrow. — Bernama