PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Court today upheld the death sentence on a trader over the murder of a French tourist five years ago.
A five-man panel led by Chief Justice Arifin Zakaria dismissed the final appeal by Asni Omar, 41, contending that there was no merit in the appeal.
The other four judges were Federal Court judges Zainun Ali, Abu Samah Nordin, Zaharah Ibrahim and Balia Yusof Wahi.
Asni was convicted by a Kuantan High Court for killing Stephanie Foray, 30, at a house in Kampung Tekek between 8pm on May 10 and noon on May 12, 2011. Foray’s remains were found some three months later buried in a cave on Pulau Tioman.
Asni lost his appeal at the Court of Appeal, prompting him to bring the matter to the Federal Court.
Asni, in white and red prison clothes, looked calm when the court delivered the verdict.
He has one last option, that is to appeal to the Pardon’s Board.
In the appeal at the Federal Court, Asni’s counsel, Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, submitted that evidence adduced showed there was no prima facie case of murder and that, at best, it was a case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
He said there was no direct evidence that his client murdered Foray and the injuries on her skull could have been caused by a fall.
Deputy public prosecutor Fatnin Yusof said the evidence pointed to murder.
She said Asni had led police to the cave where Foray’s body was found buried and also to his house where her belongings were found.