Man who set woman on fire asks not to be jailed

Man who set woman on fire asks not to be jailed

SHAH ALAM - A 42-year-old electrician who doused a factory worker with petrol before setting her on fire unabashedly asked a Sessions Court here to spare him from jail time.

M. Sivakumar, who was unrepresented, told judge Mohammed Mokhzani Mokhtar and the court that he should not be sent to jail for his family's sake.

"I am needed by my family to continue with their daily lives.

"If I'm not around, habislah (it will be over). I promise I won't do it again and I will become a better person," he said.

Sivakumar pleaded guilty to causing grievous hurt to his acquaintance R. Seroja, 37, by the roadside of a T-junction at Jalan Kebun in Seksyen 26 here at 7.30am on April 7, 2011.

The victim was riding a motorcycle on her way to work when she stopped at a traffic light.

The accused, also on a motorcycle, stopped next to her and grabbed her arm. He took out a bottle and poured petrol on the victim before using a lighter to set her on fire.

He then ran off while the victim jumped into a nearby drain. Passers-by stopped to help her and sent her to a hospital.

Sivakumar said that he did not intend to commit the crime.

"I did not plan it. It just happened because I was too angry," he said.

The court also heard a Victim Impact Statement (VIS) from Seroja who suffered 40 per cent burns on her body.

She was hospitalised for two months and could not sleep comfortably for six months.

"I feel ashamed to leave my house because people now look at me differently," she said.

DPP Salwa Asmary Abdul Rahim said that the injuries were permanent and asked for a just sentence.

Mohammed Mokhzani sentenced Sivakumar to four years in jail starting from yesterday.

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