Stop the cover up, Bukit Aman should investigate police shooting

Stop the cover up, Bukit Aman should investigate police shooting

It almost seems like a botched operation which saw the death of three people and another person missing and likely forced disappearances.

Three people found shot dead in a bizarre story are G Thavaselvan, 31, S G Mahendran 23 and two UK PR status residents J. Vijayaratnam 40.

Hiis wife G Moganambal, 35, is still missing.

The Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador yesterday said that he would order an inquest into the shooting of three men in a car chase in Batu Arang, Selangor. This is not a difficult call and something which we are confident will take place.

 At this stage, what is more crucial is for Bukit Aman to take over the case completely from the Selangor State contingent because the statement made by the Selangor police chief seems to be lopsided and hazy. He was too quick to come out with the standard police response but his version does not seem to collaborate with evidence.

 It is sad that we get the same response in ‘Malaysia Baru’ especially when the IGP seems to give an impression that he is for reforms.

Our job would be easy if we had an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) with power but for now, we have to rely on Bukit Aman’s goodwill to be neutral and independent to investigate rather than the one coming out from the Selangor contingent. 

‘Incriminating video from victims father’

A very incriminating video has been released by Govindasamy who is the father of the slain Thavaselvan, father of missing daughter Moganambal and his son in law J. Vijayaratnam. The father in the video admitted that his son was detained in Simpang Renggam before.

He only denied his involvement after his release from detention where he says he runs a carwash. 

Police must immediately investigate the content of the video and other information which has now appeared in the video. There has been much precedent where the police will lodge their own police report to facilitate an investigation therefore a similar investigation can be carried out by the police.

I wonder if the police have done that?

The police have to investigate on the following issues raised in the video

i. It has named some police officers involved with gangsters. The video clearly spoke about a motive which seems believable. The policeman mentioned in the video should be immediately put on leave or taken off from this case and should not have any access to tamper with evidence. This is an immediate serious matter.

ii. The video says the victims were assaulted, bashed up before being shot. This is yet another serious allegation because it means that they were shot after being detained and not in a shootout. This can be verified from post-mortem report.

iii. The video said his daughter was shot in the leg and a dog unit was send to locate her and she is now in detention. Can this be verified? Has the police started a mammoth search for this missing woman?

iv. The video also claimed that they were all shot in the chest like execution and not in a shootout. Once again post-mortem report would be able to determine the distance and where the shots came from and if it was indeed as the version said by the police.

v. Lawyer P.Uthayakumar’s  request for the police to publish footage from their dashboard cameras (dash cam) is correct since the police claim that the police followed all SOP.

vi. Today’s forensic science is also able to determine if the victims did actually use firearm to warrant the police to shoot in self-defence. Yet the question is how independent the forensic team can be and whose orders would they be following.

‘Police Report Rawang 011611/19’

A police report was also lodged by sister of the missing victim. Police need to investigate some of the incriminating matter raised. The report was lodged on 14 September at 7.44pm.

Based on the above police report, the family claimed that eye witness account that the rented car of the victims was sort of blocked and followed by several cars.

The report mentioned in detail the make of the cars Hilux, Honda, Fort etc;. which followed the victim’s car from that location spot which was the last text message from the missing sister. Have the police actually interviewed the eyewitnesses since that was a crucial piece of evidence in the police report?

The statement by Selangor police chief Datuk  Noor Azam Bin Jamaluddin on Sept 18 raises a few doubts as follows:

i. It says that the victims’ vehicle was involved in an accident but the victims came out shooting and in parang and was shot.      This indicates that the victims were not seriously injured in the accident.

Therefore, the many mark and bruising in their bodies needs to be determined if they were assaulted or injured in an accident.

ii. Were any policeman injured in the encounter? Looks like no policemen were hurt in the incident. If not, this would have been mentioned.

iii.The police released records that Thavaselvan was involved in 23 cases but it shows that all these cases were 2014 and before. He was detained under Prevention of Crime Act (Poca)  2014 according to the police and 2016 according to his dad.

Anyway, like his father’s statement, the police records confirm there were no new reports

iv.On Mahendran it mentioned only one case under Section 379 which is for theft and if convicted – it will be seven years. Section 15(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code says               if such person forcibly resists arrest or attempt to evade the arrest such officer or other person may use all means necessary to effect the arrest. It does not mention shoot. Under this section subsection (3), it says Nothing in this section gives a right to cause the death of a person who is not accused of an offence punishable with death or with imprisonment for life. So clearly all the three victims were not facing the death sentence 

v. While police can pile cases against an accused especially when they are dead and unable to defend themselves. Yes, it will be interesting to check how many cases were they actually convicted or which matters actually went to the courts.

v.On the Sri Lanka PR person killed, Azam  claims that there were no record of them entering the country and they entered the country on August31  indicating by some illegal ways. This argument was totally demolished when the family showed their air ticket as well as baggage records and that they came into the country on August 27.

Now, who has removed their names from the immigration records? This is exactly what happened to Altantuya. So, it is very easy to determine who deleted these records because airlines records and other records have now come out openly and this means that the CPO has been found lying. The CPO therefore should be refrained by the IGP to make any further statement in this issue

vi. The CPO also put the UK PR resident has been involved in a crime in 2016 when the lawyer’s report says that they were living overseas for the past six years.           

v. There was also police information that there was a 7km chase. Which road were they using and definitely some eye witness would have seen something like that happening? Have the public given any views or is the only version is the police version?

Police should ask witnesses to come forward since there seems to be much discrepancies but again this can only be done if the IGP forms an independent task force from Bukit Aman.

vi.In any criminal investigation especially when we have a missing person, time is of the essence. Have the police yet to conduct any major search for the missing person? I have yet to see anything like that happening.

Article 5 in our cCnstitution gives us the right to life. Those who violate this must be punished with murder. That is why we need the IPCMC with power so that the people can be protected and good policeman can flourish in the force.

S Aruthchelvan is deputy chairperson of Parti Sosialis Malaysia