PUTRAJAYA – The Court of Appeal here today overturned theacquittal of a car salesman and ordered him to enter his defence on a charge of murdering a female marketing executive in 2006.
A three-member panel chaired by Justice Datuk Linton Albert unanimously allowed the prosecution’s appeal to order Shahril Jaafar, 34, to enter his defence after ruling that the prosecution had proven a prima facie case against him.
Albert, who presided on the panel with justices Datuk Wira Mohtarudin Baki and Datuk Abdul Rahman Sebli, also ordered Shahril to be remanded, pending hearing of his defence at the High Court in Alor Setar, Kedah.
He will be remanded at the Alor Setar prison.
Albert also set Oct 19 for mention of the case at the High Court, adding that the court wanted the trial to proceed as soon as possible.
The prosecution appealed against the decision of the High Court on June 25, last year, to acquit and discharge Shahril on the murder charge, without calling for his defence.
Shahril was charged with the murder of Chee Gaip Yap, 25, in the compound of Kelab Cinta Sayang, Sungai Petani between 5.30pm on Jan 14, 2006 and 3.05am, the following day.
Chee had gone jogging with her younger sister in the Kelab Cinta Sayang premises when she was abducted.
Nine hours later, her semi-nude body was found in a bush near the jogging track on Jan 15, 2006.
The High Court found that Chee had succumbed to stab wounds on the left side of the neck and not because of internal injuries on her private part.
It was reported last year that Shahril, who had been on the run since 2006, was detained at the KL International Airport in Sepang, upon his return from Perth, Australia.
In the proceedings today, Deputy Public Prosecutor Awang Amardajaya Awang Mahmud submitted that four swabs of seminal fluid and blood taken from the deceased’s private part had 100 per cent matched Shahril’s DNA.
He said it was impossible that a third person was involved, adding that Shahril’s conduct to flee to Australia, three days after his DNA was taken, suggested his guilty mind and he was attempting to abscond from something.
Awang Amardajaya said the fifth swab taken from the deceased had a “foreign loci” which could be caused by contamination as the deceased body was found in the bushes.
Shahril’s counsel, Shamsul Sulaiman however, submitted that even if the DNA was proven to be Shahril’s, it did not prove that he had killed Chee as there was no evidence indicating there was non-consensual sex.
He said there was nothing to suggest that whoever had sexual intercourse with the deceased must be her murderer as the injuries to her private part could have been the result of consensual intercourse and not because she was sexually assaulted.
He said Shahril was not charged for raping the deceased. – Bernama