PUTRAJAYA (Bernama): The defence in Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’sÂ appeal today questioned whether there was penetration in the alleged sodomy caseÂ as Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan’s testimony was inconsistent over the existence of Â a lubcricant in the act.
Lawyer Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram, a former Federal Court judge, argued that Â according to the evidence from the complainant Mohd Saiful at the High Court,Â the act was vigorous and fast and he suffered pain in his anus and stomach.
Submitting before a five-member panel of the Federal Court chaired by ChiefJustice Tun Arifin Zakaria, Sri Ram said if that was correct, then a lubricant Â called KY Jelly could not have been used because it was to facilitateÂ penetration and avoid pain.
He pointed out that the medical evidence had confirmed that no trauma orÂ injury was found in Mohd Saiful’s anus.
Sri Ram further said the lubricant was not mentioned in the list of exhibitsÂ recovered by the prosecution from Mohd Saiful, who was the prosecution’s firstÂ witness in the sodomy trial.
“The absence of lubricant from the list casts serious doubt on theÂ credibility of Mohd Saiful, and lack of credibility in the prosecution’s case
and the entire investigation,” he said, adding that Mohd Saiful had also notÂ mentioned in his police report on the usage of KY Jelly.
At this juncture, Justice Arifin asked Sri Ram why he said lack ofÂ credibility, to which he replied if the gel was used Mohd Saiful would not haveÂ suffered pain.
Sri Ram submitted that the learned trial judge did not address his mind toÂ this part of the case at all despite strenuous cross-examination on the pointÂ (KY Jelly) by lawyer Karpal Singh.
Sri Ram said Mohd Saiful in his testimony said that the semen stayed in hisÂ anus for several days but in his evidence when cross-examined by Karpal, said heÂ did not take a bath after the incident and only rinsed his body and he had takenÂ a bath in the morning prior to the incident.
“It shows inconsistency in Mohd Saiful’s testimony,” he said.
Sri Ram said the KY gel was an important exhibit but had only appearedÂ during the examination-in-chief by the prosecution on Mohd Saiful and furthermoreÂ Mohd Saiful had told the court he himself bought the gel before proceeding toÂ the condominium.
Sri Ram said when asked by Karpal the first time whether the KY Jelly wasÂ an afterthought, Mohd Saiful agreed, however, he changed to disagree after heÂ asked Karpal to repeat the question.
At today’s proceeding, KY Jelly was being focused by the defence but whenÂ the appeal was heard in the Court of Appeal on March 6 and 7, this year, it hadÂ been not been emphasised on.
In his final appeal, Anwar is seeking the Federal Court to set aside hisÂ five-year jail sentence for sodomising Mohd Saiful, 27, while the prosecutionÂ had filed a cross appeal to enhance the jail sentence imposed on Anwar, 67.
The defence had cited 46 grounds to persuade the court to acquit Anwar fromÂ the charge, saying that the conviction imposed by the Court of Appeal on March 7Â was not safe.
On other grounds, Sri Ram also doubted on why Mohd Saiful had only lodged aÂ police report two days after the alleged incident on the reason that he fearedÂ for his safety.
On the next point, Sri Ram argued on two pieces of Mohd Saiful’s underwearÂ that he wore during the incident and when he made the police report, which hadÂ not been highlighted during the appeal in the Court of Appeal.
He said Mohd Saiful had worn underwear on the day that he was allegedly Â sodomised but forensically useless because when the investigation officer seizedÂ it, it had been washed by the mother of Mohd Saiful’s fiancee.
However, the chemist found semen stains on another underwear which MohdÂ Saiful wore on the day when he made the police report on June 28, 2008.
“According to the prosecution, the stains came from the appellant, but theÂ underwear was not the one worn by Mohd Saiful at the material time. Therefore,Â Mohd Saiful’s evidence is rendered unreliable.
“All these matters were completely overlooked by the High Court. The CourtÂ of Appeal found no mention of the underwear in the (High Court) judgement atÂ first instance. Neither did it find this in the judgement convicting theÂ appellant (Anwar),” he said.
MORE TO COME….