Malaysian police chief: We will punish officers in custodial death

KUALA LUMPUR: Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar (pic) has pledged that officers involved in the custodial death of a 25-year-old man in 2014 will face justice.

This follows a Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) report that found that physical violence by officers were liable in the death of Syed Mohd Azlan Syed Mohamed Nur at the Sungai Renggit station on Nov 3, last year.

The report also found that police made attempts to tamper with the evidence by cleaning the scene before medical officers arrived, including obscuring eyewitnesses from investigators and throwing out a rubber mat and carpet which had been stained by Mohd Azlan's blood.

Khalid said in a statement that Bukit Aman acknowledged the EAIC's findings and said police were concluding the investigation into the custodial death.

The results will be forwarded to the Attorney-General. Khalid promised action will be taken against those found responsible.

"We do not practice a blue wall of silence to shield any member of the police force who are liable for criminal charge," he said.

Mohd Azlan had reportedly left his home in Teluk Ramunia at 9pm the day before his death to buy pants.

Hours later, his father Syed Mohamed Nur Ali was awakened by bangs on the door from policemen, who allegedly searched and rifled through his home without offering any explanation.

The father claimed that police also asked for asthma medication for Mohd Azlan, though his family claimed he had never suffered from it. The family was only notified of the welder's death the next day.

His death was originally classified as a "sudden death".

The EAIC report found that physical violence used by officers during the interrogation left the deceased with 61 separate injuries on various parts of his body.

Mohd Azlan's family's lawyer Gobind Singh Deo, however, called for Khalid's resignation from the force.

"This is a shameful report that reflects on the police. This kind of report is enough for the IGP to resign," he said in Parliament this week.

The Puchong MP called for the officers involved in the custodial death to be investigated for murder and for voluntarily causing grievous hurt.