PETALING JAYA: Australian authorities have approved Malaysia's request to extradite convicted killer Sirul Azhar Umar and is expected to return to the country within a month, a British daily reported.
Citing sources, The Guardian reported that the former police officer, who was convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of Mongolian model Altantuya Shaariibuu, will leave Australia after Malaysia agreed to cover the costs.
Australia previously refused the extradition of Sirul as it violated the country's laws of not sending home a person facing the death sentence.
However, the report said Malaysian authorities have assured the Australian counterparts that Sirul would receive fair treatment when he returns.
Sirul had said that he was prepared to assist the new government to tell what actually transpired provided that he was given a full pardon.
He also expressed his displeasure over how the murder trial took place, adding that he had only followed his lawyer's instructions.
He claimed that during the trial, the "main witness" in the case was not called, thus, hoping that the case would be heard once again.
In 2013, the Court of Appeal overturned the sentences of Sirul and Azilah Hadrim, his accomplice back then. But, upon the prosecution's appeal, the death sentences were upheld by the Federal Court.
Sirul then fled to Australia where he was detained by the Australian Immigration after Interpol issued a red notice on him.
Altantuya, 28, was believed to have been shot dead before her body was blown to bits with explosives at a secondary forest near the Subang Dam in Puncak Alam, Shah Alam, in 2006.
On May 16, Mongolian President Khaltmaagiin Battulga wrote to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to ask him to help bring justice in the case of Altantuya.
PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim suggested that Sirul be brought back to Malaysia for a fresh trial.
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