KUANTAN: The trial involving the country’s biggest syabu bust began in high drama, with the defence team charging that a false police report had been lodged by a senior police officer.
Lead counsel D. Sithamparam brought to High Court Judge Akhtar Tahir’s attention that “parts of the police report lodged did not reflect the actual situation”.
The accused in the case, Lee Yong Toe, 48, from Taman Iskandar, Johor Baru, was charged with trafficking in 753,359g of methamphetamine with another man still at large at Jalan Cenderawasih, Rompin, at 6.45am on May 2 last year.
The charge under Section 39B(1)(a) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 carries the mandatory death penalty upon conviction.
Highlighting the ambiguity, Sithamparam noted that Deputy Public Prosecutor Jamil Aripin, in his opening statement, stated that police constables Shahril Sukiman and Mohd Ann Abdul Karim were the first to arrive at the scene to conduct checks on the accused and another still at large.
However, he pointed out, in a police report, C/Insp Mohd Haryadi Kasah claimed he was first to arrive at the scene to conduct investigations on the two suspects.
“This means that a false report has been lodged and the two rank-and-file personnel are abetting their superior in the report,” he told Justice Akhtar in his arguments to challenge the validity of the police report.
“As such, we request an adjournment to enable us to write in and seek representation from the Attorney-General’s chambers on the status of this matter.
“We are astounded by this shocking disclosure on the part of the prosecution pertaining to the police report supplied to us.
“Our question is which part of the police report is not true, as without full disclosure of the actual facts, the credibility of the police, Attorney-General and the justice system is at stake.
“We cannot prepare a proper defence. And with vague and uncertain facts, a fair trial is compromised.”
Replying to the points raised, DPP Jamil said that, contrary to the police report, C/Insp Mohd Haryadi was not at the scene at 6.45am on May 2, 2009, did not lead a police team under Ops Bersepadu to the scene, did not see a lorry and did not conduct checks on the two suspects.
“In actual fact, he only arrived at the scene at 9.40am and was given a briefing on the actual situation,” he said in a two-page handwritten reply to the defence.
He maintained that all the facts in the police report were true except for the presence of C/Insp Mohd Haryadi before 9.40am on May 2, 2009.
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