Apex court upholds death sentence for ex-guard over double murder

PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Court here on Thursday (Jan 4) upheld the death sentence imposed on a former security guard for the murder of his two co-workers whom he slashed with a parang when they were asleep seven years ago.

A three-member bench comprising Court of Appeal president Abang Iskandar Abang Hashim and Federal Court Judges Mary Lim Thiam Suan and Abu Bakar Jais dismissed Mohd Ferdaus Suwardi’s appeal against his conviction and death sentence.

In delivering the court’s decision, Justice Abang Iskandar said the court maintained the death penalty imposed on Mohd Ferdaus by the lower courts in light of the gruesome manner the crime was committed, which was without any mercy.

He said the court declined to invoke its discretion to substitute the death sentence on Mohd Ferdaus for a custodial sentence.

Earlier, in dismissing Mohd Ferdaus’s appeal against his conviction, Justice Abang Iskandar said the lower courts were correct to find him (Mohd Ferdaus) guilty of killing the victims and that he (Mohd Ferdaus) failed to prove, on the balance of probability, that he was legally insane when he committed the crime.

Mohd Ferdaus, 37, was sentenced to death by the High Court on Nov 12, 2019, after he was found guilty of killing Syed Mohd Fazrul Syed Mohd Ridhuan, 23, and Wan Amir Hamzah Abu Hassan, 48, at a chicken processing factory in Jalan Bukit Kuda, Klang, Selangor between 6.30am and 9am on July 31, 2017.

He lost his appeal at the Court of Appeal on May 26, 2022.

According to the facts of the case, Mohd Ferdaus returned to his village after killing the two men and admitted to his mother what he had done.

In his testimony, Mohd Ferdaus admitted to killing the two men, but on the defence of insanity under Section 84 of the Penal Code.

However, the High Court judge, in considering the expert evidence of three psychiatrists, found that Mohd Ferdaus failed to prove the defence of insanity.

In mitigation before the Federal Court today, lawyer Mohd Fadhly Yaacob asked the court to substitute the death sentence on his client to between 30 years and 33 years in jail, but Deputy Public Prosecutor Ng Siew Wee urged the court to maintain the death penalty.

She said Mohd Ferdaus had attacked the deceased when they were asleep and the attack was exceptionally cruel, adding that Syed Mohd Fazrul suffered 45 injuries while Wan Amir Hamzah had 23 injuries to his body.

"He did not stop the attack when the deceased begged for mercy,” she said, adding that Mohd Ferdaus acted out of spite with vindictiveness which warranted the most severe condemnation. - Bernama

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