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Judicial CP - October 2003

Corpun file 12118

Borneo Bulletin, Bandar Seri Begawan, 9 October 2003

Abductors get massive jail terms and whipping

By Rol Ezam




Shah Nizam

Defendants being led out of the court after they were sentenced

High Court Judge Dato Paduka Steven Chong yesterday meted out a mammoth 45-year jail sentence and 24 strokes of the rotan on Suhaili Elias, 34, the first accused convicted earlier in the abduction of a local woman lawyer on September 2.

The prolonged jail term, easily the largest ever to be ordered in Brunei, will mean that the 34-year-old father will stay in jail until he is nearly 80 years old.

Suhaili had pleaded guilty to five joint charges and four charges he had committed alone.

Meanwhile, Mohd Shah Nizam Shamshuddin, 20, a construction worker; Fenny De David Martin Danori, 27, a mechanic; and Azman Pungut, 32, a farmer, were each sentenced to 25 years in jail and 20 strokes of the cane.

All four are Malaysians and hail from Labuan.

"The defendants have asked the court for leniency. There is no room for leniency in this case. The defendants are evil, ruthless and dangerous men. They showed no mercy to the victim. They should not expect any from the court," said Judge Steven Chong.

"This is a very vicious gang robbery committed by the defendants who had entered this country illegally. There are highly aggravating features. The victim was subjected to a horrifying ordeal. I do not need to recite the details of what the defendants did to her. She was abducted and detained for about 24 hours; threatened with death by the defendants who were armed with deadly weapons; and was hurt during the robbery. I find all four defendants equally culpable in the robbery," added the Judge.

"Besides, the victim was also threatened with a parang, badly beaten up, stripped and brutally raped by the first defendant. She was then tied up, gagged and left naked until she was found by members of her family. I take a very serious view of this offence," he said.

Judge Steven Chong first sentenced them to 25 years imprisonment and 20 strokes for committing theft of cash amounting to $300, a wallet and its contents and a mobile phone belonging to the lawyer, and while committing the theft they voluntarily caused fear of instant hurt on the 34-year-old woman, and at the time of the gang robbery they were armed with a 'parang' and a knife.

All of them were then sentenced to 8 years in jail and 10 strokes for wrongfully confining the lawyer for the purpose of extorting from her a certain property, to wit, monies from her bank accounts.

Fenny Danori was sentenced to 25 years in jail and 20 strokes for committing robbery on the property of the lawyer and in committing the said robbery he punched the lawyer's right cheek.

Suhaili was sentenced to 25 years imprisonment and 20 strokes for committing robbery on the woman, and for hitting the lawyer's head and her left abdomen.

Mohd Shah Nizam and Azman were sentenced to 25 years imprisonment and 20 strokes for knowingly joining their two friends in committing robbery on the lawyer's property, and in committing the offence, they voluntarily caused hurt to the lawyer.

Suhaili was sentenced to 20 years in custody and 20 strokes for voluntarily causing hurt by committing rape.

"This is the worst case of rape that I have come across in my experience, and in view of the serious aggravating features, I think it is right that there should be a significant departure from the range of sentences that have been passed in other cases," Judge Steven Chong said.

Suhaili was also sentenced to two years in jail for voluntarily causing hurt to the 34- year-old lawyer by dragging her body on rough ground, punching her right eye area, slapping her face and kicking her right chest area while she was lying on the ground.

All four were sentenced to one-year imprisonment each for committing theft of cash amounting to $4,000 from the lawyer's bank account.

Lastly, they were sentenced to six months in jail for entering the country without a valid pass.

"The overriding factor to be considered by the court must be protection of the public interest. They are not likely to be protected if lenient sentences are passed. It is therefore necessary to send a clear message to those who are minded to commit such offences that they will face very severe punishment," the Judge noted.

"As to Suhaili's, all the sentences of imprisonment, with the exception of the sentence on the rape charge which shall be consecutive, are to run concurrently. All the sentences of whipping, with the exception of the rape charge in which 4 strokes shall be cumulative to the rest, are to be non-cumulative. This means Suhaili will suffer 24 strokes which is the maximum permitted under the Criminal Procedure Code and I think it is well-deserved," said the Judge.

The arrest was made possible due to a joint operation conducted by the CIDs from the Police Headquarters and the Central Police Station. The four were arrested within 16 hours after the incident occurred. The Investigations officer was ASP Khairur Rijal Hj Abu Salim.

Copyright 2003 Brunei Press Sdn Bhd. All right reserved

Corpun file 12156

Borneo Bulletin, Bandar Seri Begawan, 18 October 2003

Bangladeshi's Bollywood antics fail to prevent jail term

By Rol Ezam

A Bangladeshi man facing assault and attempted theft charges yesterday broke into a song, belting out 'Bollywood' numbers, during his trial.

But his unexpected performance in court was in vain as he was sentenced to 2 years' imprisonment with 6 strokes of the cane after he was found guilty of two charges of causing hurt to two men and attempting to commit theft.

Md Moneru Islam bin Md Iskandar, 27, caused a commotion in court when he started making a lot of noises by singing 'Bollywood' songs, which appeared to have wasted the court's time.

He is currently serving a sentence of 2 years in jail with 10 strokes of the cane for committing mischief and possessing a cutter at a public place, to which he pleaded guilty to last year.

Md Moneru Islam was convicted of attempting to commit theft and voluntarily causing hurt to Talih bin Kifli using a cutter on June 30 at HSBC, Bangunan Gadong Properties last year.

He was also found guilty of causing hurt to Haji Md Edy Sofian Hj Taha using the same cutter on the same day in the vicinity of Gadong Filling Station.

According to the Deputy Public Prosecutor Hjh Anifa Rafiza Hj Abd Ghani, six witnesses, including a security officer of the bank, gave evidence during the trial.

Copyright 2003 Brunei Press Sdn Bhd. All right reserved.

Corpun file 12218

Borneo Bulletin, Bandar Seri Begawan, 25 October 2003

Local gets 3 years in jail, 7 strokes

By Rol Ezam

The Intermediate Court sentenced a 23 year-old local to three years of imprisonment and seven strokes of whipping on Thursday for four serious offences under the Penal Code and two under the Public Order Act.

According to the Deputy Public Prosecutor, Suhana Hj Sudin, the defendant Hj Mahadi Hj Mahari had earlier pleaded guilty in causing grievous hurt to Indian national Ismail Jagubarali, 32, by using a knife attached to a metal pipe.

However, the DPP said that the defendant claimed for trial to the remaining five charges he faced.

During this time, the prosecution called in nice [sic] witnesses to give evidence and on Thursday, the Intermediate Court Judge Hairol Arni Hj Abd Majid found him guilty.

The defendant was convicted to two charges of voluntarily causing hurt two Indian nationals, Abu Salihu Shajahan, 29, and Abdul Rajack Abdul, 28, by using the same weapon.

Copyright 2003 Brunei Press Sdn Bhd. All right reserved.

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