Tawau murder: Mat Zaki and ehailing driver's ex-wife looked like a couple, court told

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 04 Jan 2024

The defendants being led into the courtroom in Tawau on Tuesday. - Photo: Bernama

TAWAU: The High Court here was told on Thursday (Jan 4) that the relationship between former Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCom) head of staff (intelligence) Mat Zaki Md Zain, who is charged with abetting the murder of an ehailing driver, and the ex-wife of the deceased was like they were a couple.

The eighth prosecution witness in the case, Shim Vui Nyen, 51, who owns a pub in Lahad Datu, however, said he could not confirm the matter.

He said Mat Zaki and the woman, known as Anna Juli or Ann, never talked about their relationship.

ALSO READ: Ehailing driver lured out of hotel before being killed in Tawau plantation, says prosecution

Questioned by Deputy Public Prosecutor Rohaiza Abdul Rahman, he said Mat Zaki and the woman looked like they were a couple based on their gestures when they were together.

Shim said this when testifying on the third day of the trial of six policemen and a civilian, charged with killing the ehailing driver early last year.

The policemen Rosdi Rastam, 45; Denis Anit, 45; Fabian Rungam, 44; Khairul Azman Bakar, 47; Mohd Azlan Sakaran, 40; and John Kennedy Sanggah, 44; and a civilian Vivien Fabian, 34, are charged with the murder of Nurman Bakaratu, 61, at a palm oil plantation near Jalan Anjur Juara, Jalan Apas Baru 5 here.

They were accused of committing the offence between 7.30pm and 11.30pm on Jan 13 last year and were charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code, read with Section 34 of the same law and face the death penalty if convicted.

ALSO READ: Tawau murder case: I couldn't recognise my father's body, son tells court

Mat Zaki, 59, is facing two charges of conspiring to kill Nurman according to Section 109 of the Penal Code read with Section 302 of the same law.

According to Shim, he did once ask Ann about her marital status and the woman said she was single.

When cross-examined by lawyer Datuk Ram Singh about the relationship between Mat Zaki and Ann, Shim said he saw Ann embracing Mat Zaki after a drinking session.

In response to a question by lawyer Datuk Ansari Abdullah, he said there was an occasion when Ann attacked Nurman's white car with a stick after an argument in his pub.

Shim, however, agreed with Ansari that he was not sure if the argument was related to a loan given to Ann by the victim.

During re-examination by Deputy Public Prosecutor Khairul Azreem Mamat, Shim told the court that he received a call from Ann on Jan 16, 2023, asking him to tell Mat Zaki to not reply to any message received from her phone.

However, Mat Zaki could reply to messages received from telephone number 22298, said the witness.

The trial before Judge Duncan Sikodol continues Friday (Jan 5). - Bernama

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