PUTRAJAYA, May 16 — The Court of Appeal has scheduled July 23 to deliver the verdict on the appeal by six former National Defence University of Malaysia (UPNM) students against their 18-year prison sentence for causing the death of Navy Cadet Officer Zulfarhan Osman Zulkarnain, seven years ago.

A three-judge panel, chaired by Judge Datuk Hadhariah Syed Ismail alongside judges Mohamed Zaini Mazlan and Datuk Azmi Ariffin, announced the date today after concluding a three-day hearing that began on May 13.

“The court will deliver its verdict on July 23 at 9am,” Judge Hadhariah stated.

The six former students are Muhammad Akmal Zuhairi Azmal, Muhammad Azamuddin Mad Sofi, Muhammad Najib Mohd Razi, Muhammad Afif Najmudin Azahat, Mohamad Shobirin Sabri, and Abdoul Hakeem Mohd Ali.


Previously, the first five defendants were charged with murder under Section 302 of the Penal Code, which carries a mandatory death sentence upon conviction, while Abdoul Hakeem was charged with abetting the murder under Section 109 of the Penal Code, which carries the same penalty.

The Kuala Lumpur High Court found the six defendants guilty of intentionally causing injury to Zulfarhan without intent to kill, under Section 304(a) of the Penal Code, which carries a prison sentence of up to 30 years and a fine, if the act is committed with intent to cause death.

The defendants were charged with committing the act in a room at the Asrama Jebat block, UPNM, between 4.45am and 5.45am on May 22, 2017. Zulfarhan died at the Serdang Hospital on June 1, 2017.


On July 23, the court will also deliver the verdict on the appeal of another 12 former UPNM students who were found guilty and sentenced to three years in prison for intentionally causing injury to Zulfarhan to coerce a confession that he stole a laptop.

The former students were charged under Section 330 of the Penal Code, which carries a maximum prison sentence of seven years and a fine, upon conviction.

They are Mohd Hafiz Fauzan Ismail, Mohamad Lukhmanul Hakim Mohd Zain, Ahmad Shafwan Berdal, Muhammad Amirul Asraff Mala, Luqman Hakim Shamsuri Agus, Muhammad Sufi Mohd Mustapha, Noriznan Izzairi Noor Azhar, Muhamad Ashraf Abdullah, Muhammad Danial Firdaus Azmir, Muhammad Hasif Ismail, Muhammad Adib Iman Fuad Ady Sani, and Mohamad Syazwan Musa.

All the defendants, now 28 years old, were charged with committing the offence in two rooms at the Asrama Jebat block, UPNM, between May 21 and May 22, 2017.

Earlier, Abdoul Hakeem’s lawyer Datuk Mohd Zamri Mohd Idrus, argued that Zulfarhan had several opportunities to seek medical treatment for his injuries and that no one had prevented him from doing so.

“The incident took place in a UPNM room, not in a remote jungle, and many people were around. How come not a single phone call was made to his parents? This is a puzzling question for the lawyers,” he stated.

“The investigating officer was focused on solely blaming all the defendants. Who will ensure justice for these individuals?” he added.

In response to this argument, Judge Mohamed Zaini asked the lawyer, “Are you shifting the blame onto the victim now?”

Mohd Zamri also submitted that many factors contributed to the victim’s death but to place all the blame on the appellants was not fair.

In reply to Mohd Zamri’s submission, deputy public prosecutor K. Mangai said there was evidence that the appellants did not want to take Zulfarhan to the hospital because they did not want to tarnish their names.

“They (appellants) kept him in another room and there was no evidence the phone was with him.

“He was in a terrible condition, he didn’t go to the roll call and prep class because he was sick, and his body was covered with boils (from the scalding),” she said.

Mangai further submitted there was a piece of evidence where the e-hailing driver who brought Zulfarhan to the clinic had to clean the backseat of his car because there was blood and mucous at the place where the victim was sitting.

“If the e-hailing driver could see the condition of the deceased why couldn’t the respondents see it?” she emphasised. — Bernama