PETALING JAYA, May 30 — Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid Bador today said that it was a normal procedure for police to call someone to have their statement recorded after the person lodges a complaint or gives a tip-off on police brutality.
Abdul Hamid said whenever any party comes out in the open with a claim of police brutality, the police will internally investigate the matter, but once investigators come to a “dead end”, it's normal for them to call up the person who made the allegation, to facilitate investigations.
“We call the person up to ask them questions, not to arrest them,” he told reporters after visiting Taman Tun Dr Ismail Ramadan (TTDI) Ramadan bazaar this evening.
“If Suaram claims police brutality, of course, we need to ask them how they got their information so that we can investigate. If they claim that police tortured and abused a detainee surely we need to ask them more questions, this is absolutely normal.
“It's not true at all that police wanted to arrest them,” he added.
He was commenting on human rights group Suaram who alleged police intimidation when one of its activists was summoned by police after highlighting the alleged torture of two detainees under the custody of the Klang Selatan police headquarters.
Abdul Hamid said no one has to be afraid of coming to the police if they know of a case where police officers are involved.
“There is no reason to be afraid, we will always investigate the matter fairly,” he said.
“But at the same time, the person who complains should also be responsible, when we ask them questions they need to cooperate.
“Don't just go and accuse. For example, the case where a detainee in Sentul claim that police abused him to the extent of rubbing chili powder on him. But when we investigate the matter there was something amiss, now when we are looking for the person who complained they are no longer cooperating and is in fact missing.
“But we will still investigate the matter,” he said.
Abdul Hamid was referring to a case where a 30-year-old man suspected of armed robbery, has lodged a police report alleging that he was assaulted, tasered and had his genitals rubbed with chilli paste by policemen to induce a confession from him.
On May 24, Suaram has alleged that a teenager and a mentally challenged man were tortured by the police to confess to a crime they did not commit.
Yesterday, Suaram executive director D. Sevan said Klang Selatan police chief Shamsul Amar Ramli had lodged a police report on the group's press conference on the matter.
Sevan said the move contradicted Shamsul's assurance that the allegation would be investigated and disciplinary action taken if proven true.
He said the Klang Selatan police chief should instruct an investigation into the families' allegation of torture, but instead the families and Suaram's coordinator have been summoned to give statements.
He said Suaram takes this as a form of intimidation and denial to the revelation of wrongdoing as reported.