PUTRAJAYA: The court has rejected an appeal by former bus driver Hanafi Mat Hassan against his conviction and death sentence for the rape and murder of a 24-year-old computer engineer five years ago.
In dismissing Hanafis appeal, Court of Appeal judges Richard Malanjum, Hashim Mohd Yusoff and S. Augustine Paul held that the trial judge had made a correct finding in the case.
Hanafi had claimed trial to raping and murdering Noor Suzaily Mukhtar at between 8.50am and 9.15am on Oct 7, 2000.
The crimes were committed at Lorong Pegaga in Taman Chi Liung, Klang and the Bulit Tinggi housing project in Klang.
On April 26, 2002, Shah Alam High Court Judge Datuk Hishamudin Mohd Yunus, who found Hanafi guilty of the crimes, ordered him to be hanged for the murder as well as to receive the maximum jail term of 20 years and whipping for the rape.
Having heard the submissions made by both parties and carefully considering the petition of appeal, the evidence recorded during the trial as well as the judgment of the High Court judge, we dismiss the appeal, Justice Malanjum said.
Hanafi, 37, when told by a court interpreter of the appellate courts decision, showed no emotion and just nodded his head to indicate that he understood.
Prison officers whisked him out of the courtroom after the proceedings ended. None of his family members or relatives was present in court.
The panel also dismissed an appeal by two men against their conviction and sentence for murdering fish breeder Sanip Leham, 50, seven years ago.
Justice Malanjum said the judges were unanimous that there was no reason to differ with the findings of the trial judge.
On Oct 30, 2001, the Johor Baru High Court sentenced Lee Ah Seng and Lee Kwai Heong to death for committing the offence with two others, still at large, at a former mining pool at Jalan Sungai Rengit in Kota Tinggi on Oct 30, 1998 about 4am.