LIVE: Perlis Special Branch officer to testify at missing activist inquiry
| 26 June 2018
PERLIS Special Branch officer ASP Razman Ramli will testify at the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) inquiry on the disappearance of activist Amri Che Mat today.
Razman has been summoned following claims by Amri’s wife, Norhayati Ariffin, that he and the Perlis police chief Ab Rashid, knew about Bukit Aman’s and the former inspector-general of police’s involvement in her husband’s abduction for allegedly spreading Shia teachings and dabbling in foreign exchange trading.
Norhayati had previously revealed how a Special Branch officer, Sergeant Shamzaini Mohd Daud from Perlis, had told her that her husband was under police surveillance before he went missing. She alleged that Razman was Shamzaini’s superior at the time.
Shamzaini, however, later denied every Norhayati said about him knowing about her husband’s disappearance in a police report.
Shamzaini said he only met Norhayati on May 12 to ask if he could rent shop space at her house.
But a family friend of Amri’s has testified that Shamzaini’s claim did not make sense as there was only one shop lot at the house which had already been rented out to Pharid Audio for 10 years.
Pharid Audio owner, Ris Chooi, will also be testifying to the panel today.
Amri went missing on November 24, 2016. He was believed to have been abducted by a group of people in four-wheel-drive vehicles that were seen surrounding his car in Kg Padang Behor, Perlis.
Suhakam is conducting a public inquiry into the disappearance of Amri, Koh, Pastor Joshua Hilmy and Joshua’s wife, Ruth, to ascertain if they are cases of enforced disappearance.
The Malaysian Insight brings you live updates from today’s proceedings:
4.15pm: Amri’s family lawyer, Philip Koh, asks Razman if Amri possesses any weapons or is a threat to the country.
Razman says no.
Suhakam commissioner Dr Aishah Bidin ask Razman then asks Razman if there he has any proof Amri was involved in causing unrest.
Razman says there exists no report to show that Perlis Hope is a threat to national security.
The inquiry rests and will resume on July 2.
4pm: Gomez asks if he knew that Amri was investing large amounts of money in Forex.
Razman says he knew this as Norhayati had told him about it.
Gomez then asks if Razman told them that the police was not involved in Amri’s abduction because of Shia activities.
“Did you tell them that the police were not involved and that Sosma exists for that?”
Razman then denies telling them anything.
Gomez subsequently ask why he went to the house.
Razman responds that he went there to question Norhayati on whether Amri was taken because of a clash between Shia and Sunni.
Gomez asks Razman if he knew that the Kangar police headquarters’ investigating officer Khor Yi Shuen had handed the case to Bukit Aman.
Razman says he did not know this.
3.50pm: Gomez asks if Razman has visited the scene of Amri’s abduction.
Razman says yes.
Gomez asks why he went there.
Razman says that it was his initiative.
“I went there because Amri was also mentioned in our report.”
Gomez asks if Razman was ever part of the Bukit Aman special operations.
Razman says no.
3.35pm: Gomez asks Razman when he found out that Amri was abducted.
Razman said that he was informed by a police officer the following day after he went missing.
Gomez asks if he went to Norhayati’s house.
Razman says he went the next day.
“I introduced myself as a policeman to the wife, her children and their family friend.”
3.10pm: Gomez asks Razman why did Dr Maza post on his Facebook that the briefing with DSP Awaluddin was on extremists and say beware of Perlis Hope.
Razman says that it was just a casual briefing.
Gomez then asks Raman if Awaluddin is still carrying out investigations on Amri and Perlis Hope.
Razman says he does not know.
2.50pm: Gomez asks Razman if he can confirm that during the meeting there was any discussion of Perlis Hope and Amri.
Razman says that he can only confirm there was a discussion.
Gomez asks if it is normal for the police to share information with the public.
Razman says no.
Gomez asks whether the meeting was about extremists and Amri.
Razman says it was only a casual meeting on deviant teachings in Perlis.
2.30pm: Gomez shows Razman a picture of Amri’s house.
He asks Razman where they got the picture for the PowerPoint presentation that was presented to Dr Maza by DCP Awaluddin during their meeting.
Razman says that the picture was from their previous record of the raid at Amri’s house by the Perlis mufti department.
Gomez asks Razman who is in charge of the investigations into Amri and Perlis Hope.
“Where did the police get the information for the presentation?”
Razman says that that it was from the police.
12.55pm: Gomez asks Razman if police were carrying out surveillance on Amri.
Razman said they have been carrying out investigations on Shia activities since 2015.
Gomez asked why was Amri under surveillance.
Razman said to see if there was any elements of Shia activities with Amri.
“We didn’t detect anything on Perlis Hope.”
The inquiry breaks for lunch.
12.45pm: Gomez asks Razman who was the Special Branch director during the time of Amri’s disappearance in 2016.
Razman said it was Fuzi Harun.
Gomez ask if information on all activities was forwared to Fuzi if he wanted to know.
Razman said that he only sends reports to his immediate superior.
“I don’t know if Fuzi gets all the information. It’s sometimes on ‘need to know basis’, which is practised in the Special Branch.”
12.25pm: Amri family lawyer Gomez asks Razman if he had heard allegations that police were involved in Amri’s disappearance.
Razman said he had.
Gomez asks if one of his duties was to investigate foreign exchange trading and was he an expert on it.
Razman said police were tasked to investigate Forex but that he was not an expert.
12.15pm: Suhakam commissioner Mah Weng Kwai asks Razman after Amri disappearance was there still Shia activities in the state.
Razman said that after Amri went missing there was not much information on any Shia activities.
“The Shia activities has reduced. The only one we know is the raid at Amri house.
11.50am: Suhakam officers ask Razman if the police had a file on Amri.
Razman said that they have files on Shia teachings.
Suhakam officers said Norhayati had claimed Razman came to the house after Amri disappearance.
The officer asked if Razman was involved in investigating Amri disappearance.
Razman said he went to the house to offer his sympathy to the family.
“I’m not involved in investigating Amri disappearance.”
Suhakam officers ask if there is any investigations conducted on Perlis Hope.
Razman said that there is no investigations on Perlis Hope but on Shia activities.
11.30am: Suhakam officers ask Razman about the meeting between Perlis Mufti Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin and Special Branch’s Social Extremism Division (E2) principal assistant director DCP Awaluddin Jadid.
Razman said that he has organised the meeting between them.
Suhakam officers ask if there was any discussion on Shia teachings.
Razman said that they talked about Shiaism and Amri name was mentioned.
11.20am: Suhakam officers ask if there are investigations on proselytising.
Razman said that if there were it will be sent to Bukit Aman.
Suhakam officers ask if police had monitored Amri.
Razman said that not only carrying out surveillance not only on Amri.
“Base on our studies, there is evidence that Amri was involved in Shia (activities).
“This was based on the raid by the Perlis Mufti Department on Amri’s house on October, 7, 2015.
“There was Shia paraphernalia at his home.”
10.55am: The inquiry calls ASP Razman to testify.
Suhakam officers ask how long he has been with the police force.
Razman said he has been with the force for 14 years, 10 years in Perlis.
Suhakam officers ask if he knew Amri.
Razman says no.
10.35am: Police observer Sentul police chief R. Munusamy asks Ris if his shop is open daily.
Ris says that his shop is not open daily and customers must make an appointment.
“I have a lot of outside jobs, so my shop is not always open.”
Munusamy asks Ris if the caller had asked about Perlis Hope and its Facebook site.
Ris said no.
The inquiry takes a short break.
10.25am: Family lawyer Jerald Gomez asks Ris about what he and the caller spoke about for six minutes according to the call logs.
Gomez says that Ris had received the call at 9.18am.
Ris says that the caller asked about tinting his car.
Jerald asks what else was discussed in the six minutes.
Ris says they spoke about the various types of tints available.
“He also asked for Norhayati’s contact. I didn’t give her number.
“I told the person to go to the house and see if he sees a black car that she was in.”
10.15am: Suhakam asks Ris if he had asked for the identity of the caller.
Ris says that he didn’t ask for the identity.
Suhakam officers ask why he didn’t give Norhayati’s contact.
“I was busy working and was not sure if I had her contact.”
10am: Suhakam officers ask Ris if he received any calls on May 12.
Ris says he got three calls from an unidentified number.
He says the caller wanted to know if Ris could tint his car.
“Then he asked if there was any shoplot to let. I said I don’t know.
“Then the caller asked for Norhayati’s number.
“I didn’t give him the number and asked him to go and see her.”
9.45am: Suhakam officers ask Ris how much rent he has been paying Amri.
Ris says in 2012 and 2013 he paid RM400 a month.
He says that in 2014 he a Amri struck a new agreement where he paid him RM25,000 for 12 years’ rent.
Suhakam officers ask Ris if his shop was open on May 12 .
Ris said he opened his shop at 1pm.
9.30am: The Suhakam inquiry continues with Parid Audio owner Ris called to testify on the 13th day.
Suhakam officers ask Ris how long he has operating the shop next to Amri house.
Ris says he has been operating the car accessory shop since 2012. – June 26, 2018.