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LAST_UPDATESat, 21 Jul 2018 4pm

Fresh Probe Likely Into Altantuya Murder - Lawyer

Ramkarpal Singh.Ramkarpal Singh.

PUTRAJAYA -- A fresh probe may be ordered into the murder of Mongolian model Altantuya Shaariibuu 12 years ago.

Her father, Dr Shaariibuu Setev, who is now in Malaysia to find out who ordered her murder and the motive for the killing, has met with Attorney-General Tommy Thomas and is expected to call on Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad tomorrow.

Ramkarpal Singh, the lawyer for Altantuya’s family, said new leads were brought up at the meeting between Shaariibuu and Thomas at the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) today.

Speaking to reporters at the AGC lobby after the meeting, Ramkarpal Singh said there was a good chance the case would be reopened.

"There is no final solution at this stage. But the indication is that further investigation will be conducted. That is on the cards in the near future. I can't put a time frame for it. We did not discuss the time frame. It will not be set as it is a long outstanding matter," he said. 

Ramkarpal Singh said that he brought up the new leads at the meeting and Thomas agreed that such leads could be the basis for an investigation. 

"The AG will look into the matter (new leads) further," he said. 

Asked about a royal commission of inquiry (RCI) on the matter, Ramkarpal Singh said an RCI was only an alternative. 

"If such a matter can be resolved by further investigation, there is no need for an RCI," he said. 

Altantuya is believed to have been shot dead and her body blown up with explosives at a secondary forest in Mukim Bukit Raja, Klang, between 10 pm on Oct 19, 2006, and 1 am on Oct 20, 2006.

In 2009, former police Special Action Unit members Sirul Azhar Umar and Azilah Hadri were found guilty of the murder of Altantuya.

The Court of Appeal overturned their sentences in 2013 but, upon the prosecution's appeal, they were upheld by the Federal Court.

However, Sirul fled to Australia where he was detained by the Australian Immigration at its detention centre in Sydney after Interpol issued a red notice on him. He has been at the detention centre since 2015. He is hoping to get asylum in Australia.

 Asked about the possible extradition of Sirul from Australia, Ramkarpal Singh said he was of the opinion that this was not necessary to find the motive for the murder. 

"There are other possible leads locally in Malaysia which can spark an investigation," he said.

Meanwhile, Shaariibuu, who looked calm and composed when he arrived at AGC and throughout the press conference, said he wanted to see justice done and that nobody was above the law.

He spoke in Mongolian and it was translated into English by a translator who had accompanied him to Malaysia.

-- BERNAMA