Death sentence upheld for ex-students

PHOTO: The New Paper

PUTRAJAYA - A Court of Appeal has upheld the death sentence on three former college students found guilty of murdering their lecturer and her father two years ago.

Mohamad Zul Shahril Suhaimi, 22, Mohamad Sharafe Matt Noh, 21, and Azizi Aizat Ibrahim, 22, had appealed against their conviction by the High Court in October last year.

They had two charges against them, one for the murder of Zara Eleena Omar Peter, and the other for the murder of her father, Omar Peter Abdullah.

The appeals court also allowed an appeal by the prosecution against the acquittal of the fourth accused, Muhammad Safwan Mohammed, 22, for the murder of Zara.

The appeal against his acquittal over the murder of Omar Peter was dismissed.

The three-man panel led by Justice Aziah Ali ordered Muhammad Safwan to enter his defence and for the case to be transferred to the Shah Alam High Court on Aug 7.

"For the murder of Zara, we allow the appeal to set aside the acquittal, and order the fourth accused to enter his defence.

"He is to be remanded until the disposal of the case," Justice Aziah said.

Muhammad Safwan had earlier been acquitted of both charges by the High Court.

The trio, who were former students of Cybernetics International College of Tech­nology, were charged with killing Zara Eleena, 23, who taught English at the college, between 1.30am and 2.30am on March 9, 2012.

They were also accused of killing her father, a 56-year-old retired accountant, between 11.30pm on March 8, 2012 and 1.30am the following day.

The three were charged with committing the crime at a house in Taman Kinrara, Puchong.

Afifuddin Ahmad Hafifi, Aminuddin Mohd Ramli and Fadhli Sutris represented the first, second and third accused while Muhammad Safwan was represented by Shah Rizal Abdul Manan.

DPP K. Mangaiarkarasi prosecuted.