Judge, though promoted, to continue hearing suit by Altantuya family

Altantuya Shaariibuu’s family, which alleges conspiracy in her murder, is seeking RM100 million in damages, including dependency claims.

PUTRAJAYA: Judge Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera, who was elevated as Court of Appeal judge last year, will continue to preside over a civil suit brought against the government by the family members of Mongolian citizen Altantuya Shaariibuu.

Lawyer Sangeet Kaur Deo said this was decided during a recent case management before Vazeer.

“He will remain to hear the proceedings which started at the High Court in Shah Alam in January last year,” she told reporters after attending a case management here over another related case.

Sangeet Kaur Deo.

Sangeet said so far 10 witnesses for Altantuya’s family had given evidence, with another 20 to go.

“Vazeer has now fixed June 22-25 and Aug 10-13 to continue with the trial,” she added.

Vazeer was promoted to the Court of Appeal on Aug 8 last year.

Altantuya’s father, Setev, his wife, Altantsetseg Sanjaa, and Altantuya’s son, Mungunshagai Bayarjargal, had named political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda, the government and former policemen Sirul Azhar Umar and Azilah Hadri as defendants in the suit.

The family, which alleges conspiracy in Altantuya’s murder, is seeking RM100 million in damages, including dependency claims.

Sirul and Azilah were convicted in 2009 by the High Court of killing Altantuya, who was described as an interpreter.

They succeeded in overturning their conviction at the Court of Appeal in 2013, but the Federal Court in 2015 restored their conviction and sentenced them to death.

Sirul fled to Australia before the final verdict. The Federal Court later issued a warrant of arrest for him.

Razak, who was charged with abetment in the murder, was freed at the end of the prosecution’s case. The court ruled that the charge against him was not proven and the government did not appeal, a move that drew public condemnation.

Neither Sirul, who is being held at an Australian detention centre, nor Azilah, who is on death row at Kajang Prison, have challenged the suit.