SHAH ALAM, Oct 1 – The Attorney General (AG) appears to be closing doors today in an attempt to bring a quick end to the high-profile inquest into the death of a DAP political aide, which started three months ago.
Teoh Beng Hock, the political secretary to state executive councillor Ean Yong Hian Wah, was mysteriously found dead on a 5th-floor landing outside the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission’s (MACC) Selangor office at Plaza Masalam here on July 16, after being questioned overnight into claims his boss abused state money.
His family and employer claim foul play was involved.
A private lawyer hired to act on behalf of the AG raised more than eyebrows today when he tried to limit the witnesses which lawyers representing Teoh’s family and the state government want to bring in.
Former deputy public prosecutor, Tan Hock Chuan, who is assisting the coroner’s court, had argued that there was no need to call senior graft busters, Hishamuddin Hashim and Hairul Ilham Hamzah, into the witness box, despite testimonies from the MACC rank-and-file that they had received their instructions from the two.
It was not the first time he tried to shut the door on further questioning of the MACC.
Tan first made the indication last Tuesday, when he told magistrate Azmil Muntapha Abas, who is acting as coroner, that he would not be calling any more MACC men into the witness box.
The last MACC officer who testified was senior assistant enforcer, Raymond Nion John Timban, said to be the last man to see Teoh alive.
In his statement given before the inquest took a two-week break for Aidilfitri, Raymond said he saw Teoh sleeping on a sofa in the MACC office about 6am on July 16.
He added that an unknown Chinese man who was not part of the MACC had sat with Teoh earlier, about 1am the same day.
MayGobind Singh Deo and Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, lawyers for the Teoh family and Selangor respectively, were outraged at what they claimed was a gross injustice preventing them from finding out what had really happened to Teoh.
Malik stressed that both Hishamuddin and Haidul Ilham were the most senior MACC officers involved throughout the investigation and would be the best men to shed light on several puzzles, especially as their junior officers had clearly said they got orders from the duo.
The argument went back and forth, with voices increasingly raised.
The magistrate finally said he would decide on the matter when the inquest resumes tomorrow morning with government DNA expert, Dr Seah Lay Hong, recalled to the witness box.
Tan had earlier told the court that the mystery of the unknown male DNA found on Teoh’s coat and belt had been solved.