“I was offered RM1.5 million if I admitted to killing Kevin Morais,” the seventh accused in the murder of deputy public prosecutor Datuk Anthony Kevin Morais told the High Court here Monday (Aug 27).
S. Ravi Chandaran, 47, claimed that the money was offered to him on Dec 25, 2017 by an army pathologist, Colonel Dr R. Kunaseegaran, the first accused in the murder case.
“He (Dr Kunaseegaran) said he would give me RM1.5mil. He would also bear the living costs of my family,” he said during examination-in-chief by lawyer V. Rajehgopal on the 21st day of the defence hearing Monday.
Ravi, who is the sixth defence witness, said Dr Kunaseegaran also told him that he would appoint another lawyer to represent him at the Court of Appeal.
“Dr Kunaseegaran said there was no other way and said that because I was not involved, hence the need for me to plead guilty,” he added.
R. Dinishwaran, A.K Thinesh Kumar, M. Vishwanath, Nimalan, Ravi, and Dr R. Kunaseegaran, pleaded not guilty to the murder of Kevin Morais during the journey from Jalan Dutamas 1, Sentul to No.1 Jalan USJ 1/6D, Subang Jaya, between 7am and 8pm on Sept 4, 2015.
They are charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code and read together with Section 34 of the same code, which carries the mandatory death sentence upon conviction.
Dinishwaran, 26, Thinesh Kumar, 25, Vishwanath; 28, Nimalan, 25, and Ravi Chandaran, are represented by Rajehgopal, while Dr Kunaseegaran, 55, is represented by lawyer Datuk N.Sivananthan.
The prosecution is led by deputy public prosecutor Saiful Edris Zainuddin.
The hearing before judge Datuk Azman Abdullah continues on Aug 30. – Bernama
Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle Brown asserted that murdered Senior Deputy Public Prosecutor, Kevin Morais, was the man who leaked the information about the Attorney-General Chamber’s (AGC) investigation over misappropriation at former 1MDB subsidiary SRC International.
Rewcastle-Brown told Malay Mail in an interview that “a few reliable sources” told her it was Morais who fed her the information about the investigation and leaked what was allegedly a charge sheet against former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
“I was contacted directly by that person (who prepared the charge sheet)..I think it was Kevin Morais,” the London-based Sarawak Report editor said when asked how she had acquired the highly confidential information.
“I have enough people who I’m not going to quote, reliable sources who told me it was Kevin Morais,” she added.
Three years ago Morais’ brother, Charles, issued a statutory declaration alleging his brother was responsible for drafting the charge sheets against Najib and that he had then sent copies of those charge sheets to Sarawak Report.
The papers were reportedly sent the day after Najib removed then Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail and several members of his government in what was seen as an attempt to pre-empt his purported arrest.
Charles told reporters then that he did not believe the official narrative explaining the kidnapping and strangling of his brother, which was said to be in relation to a separate bribery case for which several men faced trial.
It was for this reason Charles had demanded for a second post-mortem.
The DPP was believed to have been kidnapped on September 4, 2015, and strangled to death before his body was placed in a drum filled with concrete.
The authorities found the drum at Persiaran Subang Mewah, Subang Jaya near here close to two weeks after he was reported missing.
Like Charles, Rewcastle-Brown said she obviously doubted the official explanation to the DPP’s murder, saying the narrative that gangsters had killed Morais out of vengeance was almost a standard script to mask a more sinister motive.
She said the Malaysian authorities should launch a fresh and ”deeper” investigation.
“My biggest emotion was such sadness and concern..I think we know who has been arrested and who has been tried but I think there should be a deeper (investigation),” she told Malay Mail.
“I think it’s often a very big problem in Malaysia where street gangsters are picked up and charged with crimes without (knowing) their motives.”
Sarawak Report had also published some of the official investigation papers that showed the money trail in several reports.
Najib has denied any wrongdoing and has insisted that he is innocent.