Adib’s ribs were broken ‘in a straight line’, says pathologist

Hospital Kuala Lumpur’s Dr Mohd Shah Mahmood.

SHAH ALAM: A forensic pathologist today said he found out that Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim had suffered seven broken ribs while conducting the post-mortem on the late fireman.

Dr Mohd Shah Mahmood, who heads the National Forensic Medicine Institute at Hospital Kuala Lumpur (HKL), told the inquest into Adib’s death that the broken ribs on the left were “unique” as they had been broken in a straight line.

“That was the first time in my career that I saw rib injuries in a straight line.

“The broken ribs may have been caused by a thin, straight object,” he said when questioned by conducting officer Hamdan Hamzah.

Shah, who has over 13 years of experience in forensic medicine, said the HKL forensic team had not found any scars or bruises on Adib’s back when they conducted a clinical examination of him at the National Heart Institute (IJN) on Nov 30.

He added that the team had not been informed of the broken ribs.

He said the police had asked him and his subordinate, Dr Ahmad Hafizam Hasmi, to visit the scene of the Seafield temple riot in an attempt to reconstruct the incident.

He said the fire vehicles, emergency medical rescue service van and fire rescue tender which were deployed that night were also brought back to the scene.

When the forensic team inspected the passenger door of the van, he said, they found that the door’s edge was similar to the straight line found on Adib’s broken ribs.

Shah said it might have taken around six seconds for the side of the door to hit Adib in the back.

He added that it was impossible for Adib to have been pulled out of the van while the vehicle was reversing as the person would have had to keep up with the van’s moving speed.

“At the same time, the person would have had to open the passenger door in order to pull Adib out,” he said when asked by Hamdan about the possibility that the fireman might have been pulled out from the van during the riot.

The inquest was called by the government amid conflicting claims on the cause of Adib’s death.

Adib was part of a response team sent from the Subang Jaya fire and rescue station on Nov 27 to the temple area in answer to a call that cars had been set on fire. He died at IJN on Dec 17.