KUALA LUMPUR: Abdul Razak Baginda was released on a RM1mil court bond after he claimed trial to a charge of abetting in the murder of Mongolian beauty Altantuya Shaariibuu.
The 46-year-old political analyst was allowed to go home yesterday after a High Court here allowed his release under the bond, which was without security, due to his poor health.
The same court also allowed his case to be transferred to the Shah Alam High Court where two policemen had been charged with 28-year-old Altantuya’s murder.
Razak, whose name is stated as Abdul Razak Abdullah in the charge sheet, is said to be suffering from asthma and severe bronchitis, which resulted in him spending most of his time under remand at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital since his arrest on Nov 7.
He was heard coughing excessively a few times not long after he was escorted into the courtroom.
Under Section 388(1) of the Criminal Procedure Code, the Court can allow a sick person who is accused of an offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life to be released on bail.
Justice Abdul Kadir Musa, in exercising his prerogative, granted the bond after hearing submissions from Razak’s lawyer M. Puravalen and Deputy Public Prosecutor Salehuddin Saidin on the bail application.
However, the court bond was only a “transitional” one as the judge ruled that it would be subject to re-application when the case is mentioned at the Shah Alam High Court on Dec 14.
Apart from the surrender of his passport and other travel documents to the court, Razak was also ordered to report to the Brickfields district police headquarters on a weekly basis.
The analyst’s brother Dr Abdul Rani Abdullah, 49, and sister Rohannee Abdullah, 50, acted as sureties for the bond.
Before they agreed to it, Justice Abdul Kadir reminded them of an additional condition imposed on the bond – the automatic forfeiture of RM100,000 in the event that Razak defaults.
The judge also reminded Dr Rani to update the prosecution on his brother’s health from time to time.
Razak is accused of abetting C/Insp Azilah Hadri and Kpl Sirul Azhar Umar to commit the murder, which ended with the body of the 28-year-old Altantuya being blown to bits with explosives.
He allegedly committed the offence between 9.54am and 11.05am on Oct 18 at Level 10, Bangunan Getah Asli, on Jalan Ampang, here. This is the official address of the Malaysian Strategic Research Centre, which Razak heads.
Immediately after the proceedings, Razak gave his 19-year-old daughter Rowina a hug.
What followed next was an emotional moment for the political analyst who spent some time talking to his wife Mazlinda Makhzan, parents Datuk Abdullah Malim Baginda and Datin Rohana Abdullah, as well as other family members.
Razak, who did not utter a single word when pressed for comments, left around 1pm after signing the bond at the High Court registry.
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