Federal Court to hear Azilah’s review bid over Altantuya murder conviction in April 2020

File photo of ex-policemen Azilah Hadri (right) and Sirul Azhar Umar.
File photo of ex-policemen Azilah Hadri (right) and Sirul Azhar Umar.

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 17 — The Federal Court has fixed April 20, 2020 for the hearing of former police commando Azilah Hadri’s application for a review of his conviction and death sentence over Altantuya Shaariibuu’s 2006 murder, his lawyer reportedly said.

News portal Malaysiakini reported J. Kuldeep Kumar as acting for Azilah in the top court today.

Kuldeep said that his client wants the Federal Court to set aside its 2015 decision to uphold his conviction, and also confirmed that his client was seeking a retrial over the Mongolian’s murder.

The lawyer reportedly said that Azilah’s application for review was filed last week.

Yesterday, Malaysiakini reported on Azilah’s application to review his conviction, and also released in full Azilah’s statutory declaration that was filed together with an affidavit to support the review bid.

In Azilah’s October 2019 statutory declaration, the former police Special Action Unit (UTK) officer claimed that Datuk Seri Najib Razak as the then deputy prime minister had in 2006 allegedly given him the orders to kill Altantuya and dispose of her body with explosives.

Najib has however dismissed Azilah’s claims as a “complete fabrication” and maintained his innocence while also welcoming police investigations into the allegations.

Altantuya’s family’s lawyer Ramkarpal Singh has asked for the police to investigate Azilah’s claims, while Altantuya’s father Shaariibuu Setev has reportedly called for fresh investigations that he said would give Malaysia a chance to clear its name.

Other than the review application, Azilah had also in 2016 filed an application for a royal pardons over the Altantuya case. His lawyer Datuk Hazman Ahmad confirmed to Malay Mail today that the Selangor Pardons Board has yet to decide on the pardon request.

In 2015, the Federal Court reversed the Court of Appeal’s acquittal of Azilah and former police commando Sirul Azhar Umar, reinstating the High Court’s conviction and mandatory death sentence on the duo over Altantuya’s murder.

Azilah has been on death row in Malaysian prisons since then, while Sirul did not show up in court for the Federal Court decision and was later found in Australia where he is believed to remain under detention by Australian authorities until today.

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