Families of slain robbery trio allege police high-handedness


fDEVASTATED: Laila, who is with her baby girl, could not control her emotions during the press conference — Pic: Arif Kartono

THE parents of two brothers and another suspect gunned down in a shoot-out with police in Taman Billion, Cheras, on April 14 have alleged the cops were trigger-happy.

They accused the police of shoot-to-kill instead of wounding the suspects in the leg and arresting them.

They also said since the police only seized one semi-automatic pistol from the suspects, there was no reason for all three to be killed.

The allegations were made by Othman Yusoff, 73, the father of Aidi Noor Hafizal Othman, 24, and his brother, Noor Azman, 39; and Ahmad Kamaruddin, the father of Saufi Ahmad, 23, at a media conference outside Dang Wangi police headquarters yesterday.

They had earlier been accompanied by Lawyers for Liberty adviser N. Surendran to make a police report on their allegations.

City CID chief Datuk Ku Chin Wah, had after the shooting told reporters that the trio were suspects in a jewellery heist in Shah Alam eight days earlier and they were shot dead after one of the suspects opened fire on policemen from  their getaway car.

He said a parang and drugs were found inside the suspect’s car.

Yesterday, Othman questioned why police had to kill all three of them when the cops themselves had said that only one of the suspects carried a gun.

“When I saw the bodies of my two sons at Universiti Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC), they were riddled with bullets, some on their head and back. Why couldn’t they have shot them in the leg and arrested them instead.”

The brothers’ mother, Sosnijan Sarwarkhan 65, told reporters she could not believe her children were criminals.

“Police claim they are robbery suspects, but so far, I have not produced any evidence to proof my sons were criminals. They were only suspects in a crime. Why kill them like this?”

She said if they were indeed guilty of a crime, police should have taken them to court. “If a judge had punished my sons with a death sentence, I would have accepted it, but shooting them like this is just unfair.”

The widow of Nor Azman, Laila Shahid Parves, who also attended the press conference with her five-month old baby girl, sobbed as she asked the police to prove her husband was a criminal.

“I have known him from schooldays and never knew him to be involved in crime. I don’t want my three children growing up thinking their father had died in a shoot-out with police.”

She said the law should take into account the manner in which police discharge firearms in such a situation.

G. Prakash | 1st June, 2012