We know nothing but that she is dead

By Yusseri Yusoff (The Malaysian Insider)

APRIL 9 — There are some fixed rules and guidelines in life. For example, gravity always wins, faster-than-light travel is impossible, and politicians are, by and large, economical with the truth.

On the other hand, there are some things which are a little fuzzier. Some people think that magnetic bracelets can cure hypertension, djinns invade bodies and turn some women into lesbians, and it's okay to call someone a murderer without proof.

For the last fuzzy point, the MP for Puchong was the most high-profile person to accuse the MP for Pekan of the act, specifically in relation to the unfortunate death of a Russian-speaking lady. He's not the only one, nor was he the first to cast aspersions on Pekan's character.

Unfortunately for Puchong, he had not managed to provide a single shred of proof that Pekan had — in any way, shape or form — any involvement with the departed beauty. And, apparently, neither does anyone else.

What do we have, then?

Well, we have a supposedly cautioned statement from one of those actually accused of murdering the expired society butterfly. He gave a rather detailed account of the methods used to terminate her. Pekan was not mentioned at all.

Then, we have a statutory declaration by the man sometimes referred to as the “People's Champion”, though what that actually say about the “People”, one cannot even begin to hazard a guess. In the People's Champion's statutory declaration, he claimed to know that Pekan's wife was at the scene of the crime — supervising the murder, no less — along with two people who until then had never been mentioned before. Or since, for that matter, unless it was in relation to suing the People's Champion for being a chump in mentioning their names.

The Champion was adamant that the things he claimed happened, actually happened, since he was “reliably informed”. He also declared to be reliably informed that the MP for Kepala Batas, his son-in-law the MP for Rembau, as well as one of the Rulers, knew of activities involving Pekan, Pekan's wife and the perished interpreter. And apart from being reliably informed, the Champion gave no evidence whatsoever.

There was also a statutory declaration made by a private investigator. Actually, make that two statutory declarations made by a private investigator. In the first statutory declaration, the PI mentioned Pekan several times, once noting that Pekan said that the late former model had a liking for anal intercourse. How this information was of any use was not expanded upon. In the second statutory declaration, made the very next day, the PI retracted several statements made in his first statutory declaration, especially those mentioning Pekan in any way. At the end of it, he retracted the entire first statutory declaration, leaving some to wonder why he bothered to retract specific paragraphs first. The PI then disappeared.

Following from that, there was the affidavit made by the political analyst who had an affair with the former, and late, model. Pekan was not mentioned at all. The political analyst was, however, a close friend of Pekan. He probably still is, though one would imagine they probably don't hang out with each other as much these days.

What else do we have?

Ah, yes. We also have an alleged SMS exchange between Pekan and the lawyer representing the political analyst. It was a lengthy exchange, though there were gaps in between. There didn't seem to be any mention of Pekan being involved in extinguishing the life of the unfortunate victim, though. Interestingly, Pekan has never bothered to deny that the SMS exchange actually took place, which has lead to quite a few people asking two very important questions: Who was the degenerate at the cellphone company who leaked the exchange and why hasn't he or she been hauled up for committing a gross invasion of privacy?

Then there's the trial. The political analyst was let off, partly on the strength of his affidavit. The affidavit where he admitted to having an extramarital affair with the extinguished dinner companion, and was then blackmailed by her. He insisted that he did not order her termination.

Two men, however, were put to trial. They were part of an elite branch of the RMP and were occasionally members of the security detail for Pekan. They were accused of abducting the well-travelled — and now deceased — ex-lover from in front of the political analyst's house, driving her to a jungle, and blowing her up.

Just to make it clear, they stood trial for shooting her in the head and then attaching plastic explosives on her body before detonating them. It resulted in her (by then expired) body exploding, to rest in pieces.


It is not a fate that you would wish on anyone. Not if you're a normal human being, anyway.

At the trial, the first accused provided an alibi for the night of the alleged murder, stating that he had, first, broke fast with his girlfriend before driving off to the analyst's house to bring the — then still very much alive — attractive Oriental young lady to the police station at Bukit Aman. He then had to hand the lady over to the second accused because the girlfriend needed to be elsewhere and he was to drop her off. Later, the first accused had a late supper with his fiance, to discuss their wedding plans. He then bumped into his girlfriend again at the police station before making his way to a police halfway house in Putrajaya, to resume duty as part of Pekan's security detail.

In other words, the first accused's alibi was that he was too busy playing the field to go off blowing people up. His defence was that he's a lover, not a killer. It should be noted that the prosecutor in the trial pointed out that the defence did not bring either of the two women to testify as witnesses in court to support the alibi.

The second accused did not actually provide an alibi of any sort, other than that he wasn't at the scene of the crime, ergo he did not commit murder. In the final day of the trial, he read from a 15-page statement, which included a claim that he was innocent of killing the analyst's former lover and was being made a scapegoat. The full-statement has not been made public. Probably because it would be subjudice, or prejudice, or … something dicey, anyway. It should also be noted that the alleged cautioned statement where the murder was described in detail was made by the second accused, though he has since disavowed actually doing the deed, or even making the statement itself.

Recently, a commie, left-wing French comic, The Liberation, published an article about the murder, alleging complicity on the part of Pekan. It also included some allegations regarding commission paid for some underwater scorpions, purchased by the Ministry of Defence, then under Pekan's watch. The article was also mentioned in a few other comics around the world, possibly due to the (then) imminent ascension of Pekan onto the top of the Malaysian political pile.

What was most interesting about the Liberation's article, in our view, was that absolutely nothing new was unearthed, in spite of the fact that the reporter claimed to have travelled to Paris, Ulan Bator and Kuala Lumpur. He repeated the same allegation that a photo exists of Pekan, the political analyst and the fatal femme fatale having dinner together in a restaurant in Paris. An allegation that, alas, is totally bereft of any proof whatsoever. In the age of the Internet, the age of crotch shots, camel toes and unsuspecting sleeping politicians getting their photos “published”, not a single appearance of this alleged dinner shot has been uncovered. And no, the “satirical” cut and paste job made by the MP for Batu does not count.

In addition, the article also repeated the declaration of the aforementioned PI that a Mongolian bomoh had magicked the political analyst, such that he was unable to see the face of his former lover. That this was presented in a matter-of-fact manner should rightly be greeted with disbelief by any rational human being. Then again, rational human beings do not normally keep plastic explosives in their possession, in case they have to detonate Russian-speaking Mongolian single mums.

One has to wonder that if this Mongolian bomoh actually exists, how come he has not presented himself? After all, we're pretty sure that a lot of people would like to know what the Mongolian bomoh has to say. He might even be the one in possession of the alleged photo. He may even be the one to actually have met Pekan with the deceased. What's more likely is that he doesn't actually exist.

As it is, there are more questions than answers. In the court of public opinion, more rumours, wild allegations, and crazy conspiracy theories than any actual proof or evidence.

And in the actual court room today, the verdict will be handed out on the two men accused of murdering a foreign national on Malaysian soil. Two men, members of the Royal Malaysian Police, will discover today whether they will be set free, or to be sent to their deaths by hanging.

Yet, she remains dead. And we should all be aghast and ashamed.


Her name was Altantuya Shaariibuu.