Fortuitously, or with a certain amount of foresight, Sirul managed to skip the country before the prosecution’s appeal was heard before the Federal Court. Perhaps he, or his lawyers, had a premonition. Malaysian lawyers know appeals are totally unpredictable.
Whilst Sirul was lying low, holed up with his son in Ipswich, Queensland, the Malaysian police issued an Interpol alert for his arrest as soon as the Federal Court set aside his acquittal, in mid-January 2015.
The Australian police, efficiently and fastidiously, tracked Sirul down, arrested him and promptly deposited him in the Villawood Detention Centre on the outskirts of Sydney. The speed at which all this happened was breath taking. One week after the Federal Court decision, Sirul was behind bars in the company of other persons of deportable status.
It is a shame we have been unable to track Jho Low down with the same efficiency.
Everyone wants to see Sirul
Once the news of Sirul’s apprehension had drifted back to Malaysia, there began an unprecedented flurry of activity. Sirul was elevated to superstar status in no time.
There were queues of journalists lining up outside the gates of Villawood to interview him. Lawyers started crawling out of the woodwork, special branch officers were flown to Sydney and immigration consultants hired to attend to his visa requirements.
Was Sirul paying for all these services, and if so, how?
Sirul starts spilling the beans
Suddenly and without notice, Sirul came out with a statement a month after his detention saying he was under orders to kill Altantuya. Malaysiakini picked this up from an interview they had with Sirul.
By this time, Sirul’s Mum, sister and a hoard of political groupies had arrived in Sydney to comfort the incarcerated felon. Beef rendang and nasi lemak appeared on the menu courtesy of Sirul’s Mum (photo), who recalled his early childhood cravings and attempted to satiate them.
One of the journalists who managed to secure an interview with Sirul was a gentleman called Eryk Bagshaw. He produced an article which appeared on the 9 May 2015 in The Sydney Morning Herald.. It made interesting reading.
“I am not sure if I am ready to tell all yet. I was a member of the police force. We are bound by a code of silence”, said Sirul.
“I was acting under orders,” he insists. “Those people who wanted to kill Ms Shariibuu are still free. I want the chance to redeem my family’s dignity … I am the scapegoat”, continued Sirul.
Damning words no doubt, especially for the ‘order-givers’ who must have been wetting their pants back in Malaysia. They no longer had control over the situation and they were very concerned. No doubt Sirul was where he was supposed to be – behind bars – but the plan was in Sungai Buloh, not Villawood.
This man Sirul was turning out to be a loose cannon in a land where laws were strict, freedom of expression upheld and hanky panky frowned upon. Rules were there to be followed.
For those who stood to be exposed by Sirul’s rants and protestations, this was without doubt, the beginning of their very worst nightmare.
Trying to put the fires out
Damage control was required, and fast. There followed immediately, a sudden surge in airborne human traffic between Kuala Lumpur and Sydney. Members of both sides were on those flights. One lot wanted Sirul to shut up, the other lot didn’t.
Apparently Sirul, realising his intrinsic value, did what all good policemen are trained to do. He had, even before he was arrested in Queensland, suggested, not entirely with subtlety, that he was worth AUD17 million at least. As he explained, he wanted AUD2 million set aside for his son’s welfare and he would accept the balance AUD15 million to keep his mouth shut.
This ‘offer’ was conveyed to a ‘middleman’ to be relayed to a paymaster who obviously had much to lose if Sirul spilled the beans. The reply was ‘they want to discuss’.
This middleman visited Sirul in Villawood a number of times after he was arrested, presumably to negotiate.
Sirul Azhar Umar: $17 million blackmail from detainee in Sydney’s Villawood detention centre
Sudden change of heart
One can assume these year-long negotiations must have been successful. Promises must have been made and accepted because Sirul did an immediate backward summersault and began narrating a completely different story.
A gentleman named Ramesh emerged once again. Remember the guy who organised the Perak defections? Well this ‘fixer chappie’ managed to get Sirul to provide him with an audio-visual recording (from behind the walls of Villawood), taken with his own mobile phone, exonerating Najib of any connection with Altantuya and her resultant murder.
These video clips were sent to Malaysiakini in sequels and published intermittently over a few days in late January 2016.
Sirul in video: Some tried to use me to oust someone
‘That woman’ not pregnant, says Sirul in second video
Sirul, decked out in his Sunday best and the obligatory white skull cap (symbolic of the holy truth), proceeded to inform his captivated audience, via cyberspace, that he was not interested in entertaining journalists any longer, that Altantuya was not pregnant when she was blown up and that Najib was not involved in the explosion.
One thing is for certain. Sirul is not an Obstetrician & Gynaecologist. There is no way
he would have known Altantuya wasn’t pregnant, even if he had examined her.
Out of the entire population of Malaysia, why exonerate only Najib? No one accused
Najib of murdering Altantuya. What people were questioning was the improbability of
Azilah and Sirul killing someone they didn’t know without having received
instructions to do so. Who gave these instructions? That is the question everyone
Was this comment then a Freudian slip or something similar?
Sirul, in the last video, promised a full expose of all those personalities who had been interfering with his thought process trying to influence him to reveal stuff which was not true. This was to be be dealt with in his next video sequel or Part 4.
It didn’t happen because of this article published by Malaysiakini. Sirul’s ‘handlers’ got cold feet and headed for the hills. We never saw them again.
Permit me to pre-empt your ‘expose’, Sirul
Reading the above article is imperative in understanding the dynamics which were on going at that time.
No one believed what Sirul said in those pre-recorded videos. Study them in a little detail. Sirul’s body movements themselves show he was very uncomfortable reading from a prepared script, which it was obvious he was doing by his eye ball movements.
Comparing Azilah and Sirul’s statements
And if there is still a doubt as to how Altantuya was killed and by whom and for what reason, then it would be best to refer to Sirul’s own cautioned statement he gave the police voluntarily on the 9 November 2006.
And then to compare this statement with the contents of the statutory declaration made by Azilah in December last year
The next sequel addresses Sirul’s application for a protection visa, the brainwashing which must have taken place and the associated circus of personalities involved in providing him with completely wrong unsolicited advice, and the promises made but not kept.
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