I was tortured, assaulted while under Sosma detention, says auxiliary cop

Jasnih Ali (left) with his lawyer Hamid Ismail. Jasnih claims he was tortured by police while under detention.

KOTA KINABALU: An auxiliary policeman is claiming that he was tortured physically and mentally by policemen here while being detained under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012, or Sosma, about two years ago.

Jasnih Ali, 55, claimed that he was tortured for about two weeks. He said it started a day after he was detained on Oct 24, 2018, for allegedly trafficking in illegal immigrants.

The offence is punishable under Section 26A of the Anti-Trafficking In Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (Atipsom) Act 2007.

He was detained for 28 days for investigations under Sosma.

He claimed trial last year to a charge of trafficking illegal immigrants from the Philippines between Feb 2017 and Oct 24, 2018 at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA) where he worked. The trial began yesterday.

Speaking through his lawyer, Hamid Ismail, Jasnih claimed he was tortured and assaulted as the police wanted to get a confession out of him for the Atipsom case.

Jasnih, a father of seven, said he begged the policemen for mercy and to stop torturing him.

He said the abuse only stopped after he agreed to give a cautioned statement on Nov 8, 2018.

“Jasnih did not disclose this incident earlier because he was afraid of the consequences if he did so. It was only yesterday that he decided to lodge a police report at the Karamunsing police station about it,” Hamid said.

Hamid said whether his client, who was granted bail by the High Court here on Monday, was guilty or not was irrelevant.

“This incident should not have happened to a police detainee. Police stations should be a safe place. Yet, Jasnih suffered. He is still traumatised by this incident,” Hamid told reporters at his office here today.

He said Jasnih claimed that, among others, he was slapped on the face and head, punched on the body as well as kicked in the stomach and back.

Jasnih claimed the policemen also spat into his mouth and that a mop was also shoved into his mouth.

“He was also (allegedly) electrocuted on the feet. And all these acts were done while his eyes were blindfolded, his hands handcuffed behind his back and his pants pulled down to his knees,” Hamid said.

When asked by reporters whether he had obtained a medical report or whether he had sought medical attention at the time, Jasnih said he had not done so and claimed that he did not dare to make such a request at the time.

“All he wants now is for action to be taken against those responsible,” Hamid said.

“He wants the police chief to know this is going on in the lock-ups.”

New Sabah police chief Zaini Jass, when contacted, said they had taken heed of the allegations and would investigate them.

“We have received a police report and as in any other case, we will probe in a professional manner without being biased,” he told FMT.