Jong Nam murder trial: Cop nervous over exposure to toxic agent

siti-aisyahSHAH ALAM: A witness testifying in the Kim Jong Nam murder trial today appeared nervous when the lawyer representing accused Siti Aisyah demanded that he identify her shirt containing traces of VX nerve agent, in an open court proceeding.

Speaking from the witness stand, Supt Nasri Mansor, from the Selangor police headquarters’ Serious Crime Division (D9), said he was scared for the grey sleeveless shirt to be exposed.

This was after High Court judge Justice Azmi Ariffin said it was all right to remove the shirt from its plastic bag so that Nasri could determine if it was the same shirt he had seized during Siti Aisyah’s arrest on Feb 16 at Hotel Flamingo, Ampang.

“I experienced symptoms after I seized the clothes because I was not wearing gloves,” Nasri said without giving further details on the symptoms.

Siti Aisyah had been wearing the shirt during the alleged murder at klia2 on Feb 13.

Her lawyer, Gooi Soon Seng, had wanted Nasri to confirm that the shirt was Siti’s as the policeman was only shown an image of it during the trial.

Deputy public prosecutor Iskandar Ahmad said the chemist had advised the prosecution against exposing the VX nerve agent-tainted shirt in public.

However, Gooi said he was willing to remove the shirt from its bag and touch it.

The senior lawyer then put on a pair of gloves and cut open the bag containing the shirt while Justice Azmi and Iskandar put on facial masks.

Gooi then asked Nasri, who also put on a mask and gloves, to step down from the witness stand to identify the location of the mark he had made on the shirt.

“I could not find it because the shirt was torn,” Nasri said after inspecting the evidence.

Nasri added that the mark he had made might no longer be on the shirt after the chemist had removed the parts containing the VX nerve agent.

The policeman also appeared anxious when Gooi approached him with another piece of evidence, a black and white scarf belonging to Siti Aisyah, after he returned to the stand.

“Can you put it away?” he asked.

Last month, chemist Dr Raja Subramaniam testified that he had found VX nerve agent precursors on Siti Aisyah’s sleeve and a “LOL” T-shirt worn by Vietnamese accused Doan Thi Huong.

The “LOL” T-shirt was said to have been worn by Doan when she allegedly approached Jong Nam in klia2 and sprayed the VX nerve agent on him.

Images from CCTV recordings showing Jong Nam’s alleged assassin wearing the “LOL” T-shirt were published in the international media, and the alleged assassin was nicknamed “Miss LOL”.

Siti Aisyah and Doan were charged with killing Jong Nam, the estranged half-brother of North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong Un, on Feb 13.

Jong Nam, the eldest son of former North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, arrived in Malaysia on Feb 6, and was at klia2 to board a 9am flight to Macau on the day he was killed.

He died on the way to Putrajaya Hospital, sparking a diplomatic row between Putrajaya and Pyongyang.

During the opening statement on Oct 2, the prosecution said it would prove that the two women approached Jong Nam at the airport’s departure hall and sprayed VX nerve agent in his eyes and face.

Prosecutors told the court the actions of Siti Aisyah and Doan showed that they intended to cause Jong Nam’s death.

The trial continues tomorrow.

Traces of VX nerve agent found on Siti Aisyah, Doan’s clothes

Judge, lawyers to view ‘LOL’ shirt outside courtroom