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Thursday September 26, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Thursday September 26, 2013 MYT 7:03:02 AM
by josephine jalleh
Back in jail: Mohd Azam (left) being escorted from the High Court after he was given the death sentence .
GEORGE TOWN: A former security guard has been sent to the gallows by a High Court here after he was found guilty of murdering a 76-year-old woman during a burglary three years ago.
Mohd Azam Raja Abdullah, 42, was found guilty of murdering Soh Lian Thye between 5am and 9am on March 2, 2010, at a shophouse in Jalan Gurdwara here.
Before being led out of the courtroom, Mohd Azam kissed his parents on their cheeks.
His mother was seen sobbing after the judgment was delivered.
In his judgment, Justice Zamani Abdul Rahim said the defence had failed to raise reasonable doubt to the prosecution’s case.
He said Soh’s husband Lim Beng Siang, now 82, had testified that he shouted for help after Mohd Azam ran away with some items he stole from the shophouse.
Justice Zamani said the injuries found on Soh showed that she had been hit hard more than once.
“The accused had testified that he could have run away without hitting her. There was no evidence that the deceased had tried to fight back,” he said, adding that Soh was only carrying a urinary pot on her way to the toilet that morning.
He said Penang Hospital senior consultant forensic pathologist Datuk Dr Bhupinder Singh had testified that Soh’s head injuries were sufficient to cause her death.
However, the judge added that his decision was not final as the case would automatically be brought to the Court of Appeal and the Federal Court.
He also advised Mohd Azam to repent and pray for forgiveness when in prison.
Mohd Azam was represented by P. Latsmanan and K. Thangesvaran while DPP Amir Hamzah Othman prosecuted.
In April last year, the High Court had acquitted Mohd Azam of the charge after ruling there was no evidence of murder.
Mohd Azam had then pleaded guilty to an amended charge under Section 457 of the Penal Code of breaking into the shophouse that day to steal three pieces of costume jewellery worth about RM100 to RM200.
He was jailed 14 years and ordered to be whipped 16 times.
The prosecution subsequently appealed to the Court of Appeal against the murder acquittal, and the Court of Appeal ordered the case to be reverted to the High Court for Mohd Azam to enter his defence for murder.
The appellate court had also set aside the conviction and sentence for the housebreaking charge.
Tags / Keywords:
Courts & Crime, murder, high court, soh lian thye
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