Monday, May 16, 2011

Sodomy II : Anwar ordered to enter defence

UPDATED @ 10:59:38 AM 16-05-2011By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal
Anwar and wife Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail arrive at the courthouse for his sodomy trial in Kuala Lumpur on May 16, 2011. — Reuters pic
KUALA LUMPUR, May 16 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim will have to defend himself on a charge of sodomising former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan three years ago, the High Court ruled today.

Trial judge Datuk Mohd Zabidin Mohd Diah concluded that there was a prima facie case against the 63-year old Pakatan Rakyat (PR) de facto leader, facing a second sodomy case charge in 13 years.

He was sacked as deputy prime minister and finance minister after the first case came to light in 1998.

“Prosecution proven all facts to define charge. Prima facie case made out against accused. Accused therefore called to enter defence,” said Mohd Zabidin today.

Anwar’s lawyers, in their submissions throughout the prosecution's case, have attacked the credibility of the star witness Saiful as well as the lab findings of the government chemists.

They had charged that Saiful had lied in open court, and charged that there were many loopholes in his testimony.

The judge, however, quashed all arguments relating to Saiful’s credibility, saying that the complainant’s testimony was indeed reliable.

“I found PW1 credible witness, his evidence reliable,” said Mohd Zabidin.

The judge also ruled that there was nothing “inconsistent” with clinical findings by Hospital Kuala Lumpur specialists in the case.

“All three doctors testified positively, conclude there was penile penetration,” said the trial judge.

Defence lawyer Sankara Nair argued against accepting the DNA samples in the trial as the samples were kept by investigating officer ASP Jude Pereira for 97 hours before being given to the chemist.

The prosecution team, led by Solicitor-General II Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abiden, argued that the DNA samples taken from three items in a cell where Anwar spent the night on July 16, 2008 matched with the “Male Y” DNA profile.

Yusof had also said Anwar was the sole detainee in the lockup at the time when the items — a “Good Morning” towel, toothbrush and mineral water bottle — were retrieved.

Chemist Dr Nor Aidora Saedon and Supt Amidon Anan were called earlier in April to identify the items to be marked as exhibits.

Government scientist Dr Seah Lay Hong testified last March that she had found two unknown male DNA profiles from samples retrieved from around Saiful’s anus, one of which she had earlier called “Male Y”.


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