Rizalman's bail extended

PETALING JAYA: Former Malaysian military attache Muhammad Rizalman Ismail's bail over assault and burglary charges was extended after he made a brief appearance in a Wellington court on Thursday.

The former second warrant officer has been accused of assault with intent to commit sexual violation and burglary on a 21-year-old Tania Billingsley, a Wellington woman, in May last year.

A decision will be made on whether the matter will be heard in the High Court or a district court before his next appearance in April, reported The New Zealand Herald and The Dominion Post and the portal stuff.co.nz.

He has been given bail until his next appearance in April with strict conditions, including a curfew and restrictions on going to the suburbs of Newtown and Berhampore and Cuba St in central Wellington.

Rizalman, 38, was an attache at the Malaysian High Commission when he was arrested on May 9 last year following the alleged attack in the victim's home in the Wellington suburb of Brooklyn.

He was charged the following day and faces a maximum 10-year jail term for each offence.

After his arrest, Rizalman left New Zealand without facing trial after Malaysia invoked diplomatic immunity.

Billingsley then waived her right to name suppression and publicly criticised Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully's handling of the case.

Rizalman arrived back in the country in late October, escorted by police after extradition proceedings were filed in Malaysia.

He pleaded not guilty to the charges at the Wellington District Court on Oct 28.