Mongolian model murder case: Defence team to act for Sirul soon

Mongolian model murder case: Defence team to act for Sirul soon
Defense lawyer Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin, addresses mediapersons after the verdict to restore the death sentence against Azilah Hadri and Sirul Azhar Umar for the murder of Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu at the Federal Court in Putrajaya on January 13, 2015.

PETALING JAYA - Former police commando Sirul Azhar Umar's defence team will come up with its plan of action by next week, said his counsel Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin.

He confirmed yesterday that he now knows where Sirul was being detained in Australia, but was not sure whether he was in immigration or police custody.

"The reports on an extradition request for my client are also uncertain," Kamarul said yesterday.

Sirul failed to appear in the Federal Court on Jan 13 when he and former C/Insp Azilah Hadri, 38, were sentenced to death for the October 2006 murder of Mongolian beauty Altantuya Shaariibuu, 26.

The court then issued a warrant for Sirul's arrest.

Sirul went off the radar after entering Australia in October last year until an Interpol Red Notice was issued.

Kamarul had been trying to contact his client in Australia since his failure to appear before the Federal Court. He confirmed that he was still representing Sirul.

Kamarul refused to comment on reports that Sirul had been freed in Australia with conditions.

A spokesman for Australia's De­p­­artment of Immigration and Border Protection said people who had no lawful basis to remain in Australia were expected to leave.

"If a person does not depart on his own accord or does not ask to be removed, the department makes arrangements for involuntary removal once an assessment has been made as to whether removal will result in a breach of Australia's international non-refoulement obligations. (Non-refoulement is the idea that it is illegal for states to expel or return ["refouler"] refugees who have a well-founded fear of persecution.)

"The final outcome, and the time required to reach that outcome, depends on the person's individual circumstances and the options that may be available to them," he said in response to enquiries on Sirul's detention.

Sirul, 43, is believed to have entered Australia on a tourist visa and a valid passport but they were revoked by the Australian govern­ment following the Inter­pol notice issued against him.

On Tuesday, an Australian immigration team raided a house in Brisbane and arrested Sirul.

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