Court orders govt, ex-cops to pay RM5 million to Altantuya’s family

SHAH ALAM, 16 Dec 2022:

The Shah Alam high court today ordered the Malaysian government and three individuals to pay RM5 million to the family of Mongolian model Altantuya Shaariibuu, who was murdered in 2006.

Judge Datuk Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera allowed the lawsuit by Altantuya’s parents Dr Shaariibuu Setev and Altantsetseg Sanjaa together with grandsons Mungunshagai Bayarjargal and Altanshagai Munkhtulga – on behalf of her brother Altanshagai Munkhtulga, who passed away in 2017 – alleging they suffered mental shock and psychological trauma after the model’s death.

The family filed the lawsuit against former police officers Azilah Hadri and Sirul Azhar Umar, former political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda and the Malaysian government.

“I find the plaintiffs have successfully established their case against the first,” the judge said.

“(The government), as the employer, is vicariously liable for the unlawful actions of the first and second defendants, which were carried out in the capacities of police officers.”

The judge indicated the police officers, who only knew the victim through Razak’s mediation, “brutally” murdered the model.

Altantuya was acting as an interpreter in negotiations for the sale of two Spanish-French-made Scorpene submarines.

She was murdered on 18 Oct 2006, and her body was blown up in pieces by military-grade explosives in a forest outside Kuala Lumpur.

The two cops were special agents in charge of protecting the then-Defence Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who later became prime minister 2009-2018.

Some witnesses testified the interpreter was demanding a part of the bribe she allegedly paid during the sale of the two submarines.

According to the murder investigation, a taxi driver wrote down the licence plates of the two policemen’s vehicles when they kidnapped Altantuya in front of Razak Baginda’s home in the capital.

The former adviser was charged at first but acquitted in 2008. He has moved to England with his wife and his children.