'Probe case of man who died in police custody'
PETALING JAYA (Jan 22, 2009): Opposition MPs and other political leaders gathered outside the Subang Jaya district police headquarters yesterday calling for a thorough probe into the death of a 22-year-old car theft suspect in police custody on Tuesday.
About 100 people including the family members of the dead man Kugan Ananthan, Kapar MP S. Manikavasagam, Puchong MP Gobind Singh, Teluk Intan MP. M. Manoharan, Keadilan’s Selangor Youth leader Khairul Anuar Ahmad Zainuddin, MIC Youth Leader T. Mohan and Police Watch and Human Rights committee head S. Jayathas arrived at the headquarters at 3.30pm to lodge a report. The supporters carried banners which bore the pictures of Kugan’s body taken at Serdang Hospital.
The photos showed bruises, swells, cuts and abrasions all over the body and froth oozing from the mouth and nose.
“It is the most brutal and horrific case of police brutality I have ever seen. It appears that not an inch of his body had been spared. I urge the federal police to immediately probe the death of this young man. His family is seeking justice and those responsible must face the law,” said lawyer N. Surenthiran, who is representing Kugan’s family.
Three police reports were lodged by the deceased’s family, Manikavasagam and Khairul calling for the incident to be probed.
Manikavasagam said there are two witnesses to the assault on Kugan who are willing to come forward to reveal what they saw.
“It was the first time he had ever been detained by police and he came out dead. We were never told where he was being held. We looked for him everywhere since his arrest on Jan 15 but the police only informed us on Tuesday that he had died,” said Kugan’s mother, N. Indra.
She said her son did not suffer from asthma as claimed by police.
Selangor police chief DCP Datuk Khalid Abu Bakar, when contacted, urged all parties not to speculate on the death of the man and allow police to probe the case.
“We commenced a probe soon after the incident under Section 330 of the Penal Code which is for causing hurt to a person in an attempt to force them into giving or making a statement,” he said.The investigating team probing the death is from the state police headquarters, he said.
He said the post mortem was yet to be carried out as the family of the deceased had refused to positively identify his body.
Khalid said Kugan was with an accomplice when he was arrested in Sg Chua, Kajang after a car chase by a team of detectives.
He said the accomplice managed to escape on foot but Kugan was caught.
He said soon after his arrest on Jan 15 for suspected car thefts and on questioning him, police recovered a stolen Toyota Camry and a Honda Accord.
He said police recovered 13 stolen cars from a godown in Puchong yesterday based on information gathered from Kugan.
Khalid said the deceased was allegedly involved in several cases of car thefts in the Klang Valley and Johor.
Kugan, a security guard from Puchong had a remand order on him till yesterday.
seals: "Even the worst criminal has the right to face a fair trial under the law". Can the party who is guilty investigates its own case? Will that be fair?