5 cops held over death of Special Branch man at Penang hotel

AFP pic.

GEORGE TOWN: Penang police detained five of their personnel yesterday to assist in investigations over the death of a Special Branch policeman believed to have fallen from a hotel in Pulau Tikus here on Monday.

State police chief A Thaiveegan said the five, aged between 40 to 50, were detained to facilitate investigations as they were at the same function with the deceased, Sofian Shahari, 47.

“We detained them to record their statements to ensure there is no conflicting information and that they are telling the truth.

“We are preparing an investigation paper which will be handed over to the deputy public prosecutor for further action,” he said after opening a talk on “Exposure of Contemporary Crime Issues” at Universiti Sains Malaysia here today.

Thaiveegan said the five detained policemen, with the ranks of sergeant and corporal, tested positive for drugs but police were still waiting for confirmation from the Chemistry Department.

He said apart from the five, police were still looking for several other witnesses, including members of the public.

“Police are waiting for the complete post-mortem on Sofian for further action,” he said.

In the incident at 4.45am, Sofian’s body was found by a hotel employee lying face down in the car park in front of the hotel on Monday.

Before the incident, Sofian, who was a corporal and had been serving the force for 19 years, was believed to have been at a karaoke centre at the hotel to celebrate the birthday of another policeman from the Penang police contingent.

Police conducting investigations found a bag and the left slipper on the second floor of the building.

Sofian’s wallet, authority card and mobile phone were missing.