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Sosilawati murder: Woman: I'm a victim, not murder suspect's wife

Contributed by Anonymous on Friday, October 08 @ 11:16:21 CDT

Community
NST, Oct 08 2010

By V. Shuman and Elizabeth Zachariah

KUALA LUMPUR: The woman who surrendered to police on Thursday in connection with the Banting murder investigations, claimed that she, too, was a victim of the suspects. The woman's lawyer, M. Manoharan, claimed the woman had been locked up in a shed on the poultry farm in Ladang Gadong, Banting, since December last year.

The 27-year-old woman had claimed that she knew one of the main suspects since 2003.

 

makkal osai 10092010


"My client is a victim herself as she was locked up in a hut on the suspect's farm. She claimed that two other women were locked up with her.
"She escaped after the two main suspects and their workers were arrested. She noticed there was no one on the farm and broke out of the hut. She does not know what happened to the two women," Manoharan said.

The lawyer was speaking to reporters at the Bukit Jalil police station after his client was remanded for six days to assist in investigations.
Manoharan also denied reports that the woman was the wife of one of the suspects who was arrested earlier, adding that his client was unmarried.

According to the lawyer, the woman went into hiding after she escaped as she was afraid of the suspects.

"It was only after her photograph was published in newspapers that her family sought my help and she turned herself in to police."
The woman turned up at the Dang Wangi police headquarters about 5pm on Thursday, accompanied by Manoharan.

She was taken for a medical check-up at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital later in the afternoon after she complained of dizziness.

Manoharan declined to comment when asked if the woman's family had lodged a missing person's report.

Yesterday, magistrate Ahmad Shakib Ismail granted the remand order at the police station where the woman was seen handcuffed and in police lock-up clothes.

The magistrate later extended the remand order on the two lawyer brothers and a third suspect. They are also being investigated for the murders of businessmen Mohd Shafiq Abdullah, 37, from Sungai Petani, Kedah and Thevaraj Shanmugam, 28, from Taiping, Perak.

Counsel for the lawyer brothers, Ravi Nekoo, questioned the lengthy remand period imposed on his clients. "My clients have been in remand for almost a month now and police say they still need more time. This is not reasonable."

Ravi is part of a three-man defence team comprising Puspa Ratnam and Amer Hamzah Arshad, who replaced lawyer D.P. Vijandran.

Police also re-arrested five suspects in the Banting murders yesterday to assist in investigations into the murders of Mohd Shafiq and Thevaraj.

Mohd Shafiq and Thevaraj went missing on April 13. It was later ascertained that they had been in contact with the lawyers prior to their disappearance.

Their disappearance was later re-classified as murder.

To date, nine suspects are being probed for the murders. They are the two lawyer brothers from Banting, their six employees and the woman who surrendered on Thursday.

The murder victims have been identified as cosmetics queen Datuk Sosilawati Lawiya, 47, her driver Kamaruddin Shansuddin, 44, CIMB Kampung Baru branch officer Noorhisham Mohammad, 38, lawyer Ahmad Kamil Abd Karim, 32, Mohd Shafiq, Thevaraj, housewife T. Selvi, 44, and Indian millionaire Allal Kathan Muthuraja, 34.

Police investigations have revealed that at least four victims were murdered and their bodies burnt at the lawyers' farm in Ladang Gadung.

The ashes and bones were later scattered in nearby rivers and streams. Police forensic teams have found human bone fragments and personal belongings of the victims, which have been sent to the Chemistry Department for checks.
********
NST, Oct 08 2010
Clients of lawyer brothers in a dilemma
KUALA LUMPUR: Clients of the lawyer brothers are worried about the status of their cases which were handled by the two men. Since the arrest of the two lawyers early last month, police have seized hundreds of files from their law firm on Jalan Kemboja 33, Banting.

On Thursday alone, police filled a two-tonne lorry with more files from the firm, which had been sealed.
Bar Council president Ragunath Kesavan said at least one police report had been lodged by a client of the brothers for access to his files as his case was coming up soon.
"For now, a third partner in the firm is handling the cases, but we are offering to help her if the caseload is too much."

It was learnt that the brothers had been disbarred on Nov 5 but had continued practising following a stay of execution granted by the High Court. They were then registered as legal assistants.

Ragunath said the partner in the firm had been calling up clients to reassure them that there would be no disruptions to their cases.

"All cases which are not linked to the Banting murders will be handled by this partner. We have offered our help and will only intervene if she cannot cope," he said.

In earlier reports, the Bar Council had said while a lawyer under inquiry waited for a decision, it could take over the practice and the accounts of clients to avoid wrongdoing.

The council also provides a compensation fund, currently totalling RM1.3 million, to help clients who have been cheated by lawyers.

Meanwhile, Ravi Nekoo, the lawyer to the two suspects, said he had been given instructions by his client to handle his case files.

Ravi said the other "partner" in the firm was only a stand-in.

"I will be contacting the Bar Council in the hope that the pending cases will be distributed among the members," he said.
*******
 

 
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