A LONDON jury acquitted Fatimah Kumin Lim of stealing millions worth of diamonds belonging to the ex-wife of the Sultan of Brunei.
The jury reached its verdict after a trial lasting several days at the Isleworth Crown Court where Lim, 35, had denied the charges and fought the case with a legal aid lawyer.
She had been accused of taking the jewellery belonging to Mariam Aziz and was said to have replaced them with fakes.
The stolen jewellery included a pear-shaped 12.71-carat blue diamond worth £7.6mil (RM41mil), a rectangular 27.1 carat yellow diamond worth £600,000 (RM3.2mil) and a diamond bracelet worth £3.3mil (RM18mil).
Lim turned professional when she was 16 and went on to represent Singapore in numerous badminton tournaments, including winning a silver medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.
She quit the sport in December 2002 because of persistent knee injuries, and left for Brunei in 2003 to work as a badminton coach to Mariam.
Prosecutors had alleged Lim sold the jewellery to clear her own gambling debts.
Her Singapore lawyer Hamidul Haq said: “The verdict vindicates Lim as she has consistently maintained her innocence of the charges she faced in England.” — The Straits Times/ Asia News Network