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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Sodomy II: DPP dropped over 'affair' with Saiful

DPP Farah Azlina Latif has been removed from the prosecution team in Anwar Ibrahim's current sodomy trial, according to Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail.

NONEAccording to a news alert by the Sun, her removal follows allegations that she has had an intimate relationship with Saiful Bukhari Azlan (left), Anwar's accuser.

Another report by Berita Harian Online said that Farah Azlina's removal takes effect immediately.

The allegations were made by blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin in an article on July 22.

This latest turn of events will likely add some fireworks when the otherwise snail's pace trial resumes on Aug 2.

Contacted by Malaysiakini, defence counsel Sankara Nair said that the decision by the AG's Chambers came as a major shock for the defence team.

"I don't know why they are dropping her. I'm not sure if they are related to our query," said Sankara.

Sankara was referring to a letter sent to the AG's Chambers yesterday, which sought a confirmation or denial over Raja Petra's allegation.

He said that although Farah Azlina had been dropped, it was still incumbent upon the AG's Chambers to reply to the defence team's letter.

Unfair advantage

"It is best that they reply to us formally to the query that we have made. If there is truth in the allegation, then there will be serious implication on the integrity of the AG's Chambers.

"This guy is a witness and cannot have access to the prosecutor's information. He has to be treated as any other witness because this is not Saiful versus Anwar.

azlan"It is a case brought by the state against Anwar and Saiful is a witness.

"As such, Saiful Bukhari cannot be given an unfair advantage of having access to the prosecutor's questions and planning ahead his answers," said Sankara.

Earlier Saiful's testimony had raised eyebrows when he admitted to meeting, on separate occasions, then Deputy Prime Minister NajibAbdul Razak and a police officer, before lodging a police report against Anwar.

Anwar, 62, is charged with sodomising Saiful Bukhari, 25, at Unit 11-5-1 of the Desa Damansara Condominium in Jalan Setiakasih, Bukit Damansara between 3.01pm and 4.30pm on June 26, 2008.

He is charged under section 377B of the Penal Code and can be sentenced to a maximum of 20 years' jail and caning upon conviction. This is his second sodomy charge since 1998 and he claims that both were politically motivated.

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