Friday, 19 October 2012

Six years on, Altantuya's ghost still lingers

  • John Berthelsen, Asia Sentinel
  • 9:38AM Oct 19, 2012
It is six years today since bodyguards for now-Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak dragged the Mongolian translator and party girl Altantuya Shaariibuu out of a car in a patch of jungle near Shah Alam.
As she begged for her life and apparently that of her unborn child, they knocked her unconscious, then shot her twice in the head.

That was Oct 19, 2006. According to court testimony, Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar, members of the elite Unit Tindakan Khas, both assigned to Najib's office, then wrapped Altantuya's body in C4 plastic explosives and blew her up, possibly to mangle her remains so badly that the fetus would be destroyed.

NONESirul Azhar was interrogated by police shortly after the murder was discovered. He was informed that anything he said could be held against him, in accordance with the law.

In his cautioned statement, as his confession was called in Malaysia, he told authorities he and Azilah had been offered RM100,000 to kill the woman and her two companions, who were causing highly public embarrassment for Abdul Razak Baginda, Najib's best friend.

The 28-year-old Mongolian woman, in a letter found after her death, wrote that she was sorry she had been blackmailing Razak Baginda.

If French police records are to be believed, Razak Baginda was allegedly central to a massive bribery case in which a total of nearly 150 million euros (RM598 million) in payments were steered to two Razak Baginda companies, Perimekar Sdn Bhd and Terasasi Hong Kong Ltd.

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