- Published on Friday, 04 July 2014 11:28
KUALA LUMPUR: Authorities have denied junior envoy Muhammad Rizalman Ismail’s request to delay his return to New Zealand, where he faces burglary and attempted rape charges, till after Hara Raya Puasa.
Citing an unnamed official, the website of a New Zealand television broadcast station reported today the military staff assistant formerly attached to the High Commission in Wellington will be sent back to the Pacific island nation “as soon as possible”.
Muhammad Rizalman had earlier requested to be allowed to spend Ramadan, where Muslims are obliged to fast for a month, in Malaysia, according to New Zealand media reports.
The New Zealand Herald also reported the 38-year-old father of three as having a history of depression.
Muhammad Rizalman is currently undergoing mental and emotional evaluation tests, the paper reported today, citing an unnamed doctor at the Tuanku Military Hospital here.
The envoy would not be discharged until the medical examinations were complete, the doctor said.
“We are still waiting for the reports to the tests and then the doctors still need to write their report.
“It would take more than a couple of days, so it’s highly unlikely Rizalman will go before the weekend,” the doctor was quoted by the New Zealand paper as saying.
Muhammad Rizalman’s wife and three children are being housed at a military apartment near the hospital, according to the daily.
Malaysia, which had first recalled Muhammad Rizalman home from New Zealand, decided two days ago to return the military officer to stand trial there, stripping the envoy of his diplomatic immunity.
Muhammad Rizalman was arrested by Kiwi police on May 9 on allegations of burglary and sexual assault on a 21-year-old woman.
He was charged in a New Zealand court a day later for burglary and assault with intent to commit rape, with both charges carrying the maximum penalty of a 10-year jail term.
-The Malay Mail