Kuala Lumpur — Two Malaysian police officers’ convictions for the 2006 murder of a Mongolian model linked to a senior political aide were overturned by the Malaysian Court of Appeals.
The model, Altantuya Shaariibuu, was shot and her body blown up with explosives.
The policemen were members of a high-security detail for leading Malaysians, and were sentenced to death in 2009.
Allegations of a political conspiracy are expected to be revived by the acquittals. The Attorney General’s office plans to appeal the ruling.
An associate of Prime Minister Najib Razak, defence analyst Abdul Razak, was eventually acquitted after being charged with the murder. He had admitted to having an affair with the victim.
The opposition has tried to link the Prime Minister to the case, but he denied any connection in 2007, saying he’d never met Ms. Shaariibuu.
The policemen are Sirul Azhar Umar and Azilah Hadri, and their attorney says they have been acquitted, discharged and are now free.
The Court of Appeals ruled that gaps in the evidenced were overlooked in their original trial, and thus ordered them released.
According to the Associated Press, these gaps included whether the officers had access to explosives, whether they intended to kill her, and whether they were present at the murder site. Image/Google Images