Family seeks justice over custodial death


Source: Malay Mail Online

A grieving Natthanan and Yanika console each other outside the South Klang police headquarters yesterday. ― Malay Mail pic

A grieving Natthanan and Yanika console each other outside the South Klang police headquarters yesterday. ― Malay Mail pic

KLANG, Feb 10 — The family of S. Balamurugan is claiming police brutality after he was found dead at the North Klang police headquarters on Tuesday.

They also questioned why the 44-year-old man, who was self-employed in the tyre recycling business, was not released immediately after the Klang magistrate’s court refused to grant police a remand order.

S. Balraj, 33, said he was shocked to see the bruises and wounds on his brother’s body after a post-mortem at Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah.

He said he was only allowed to have a glimpse of his brother’s face before the post-mortem and to see Balamurugan’s body after the procedure.

“There were bruises all over his body. He had a bloodied nose and wounds on his shoulder that looked like he was scalded with water,” Balraj said.

“He also had a large bruise on his chest. I want to know how the bruise got there.”

Balraj said his brother was recovering from fever when he was arrested along with two others for alleged robbery on Monday. He also said his brother suffered from a heart condition, but was on medication.

“Why was he not released immediately?” he asked.

Balamurugan’s cousin, S. Kumar Subbiah, 41, questioned police procedure over his arrest.

“Police have their standard operating procedure. What happened with Balamurugan? Didn’t they follow it?” he asked.

Balamurugan’s lawyers, Gerard Lazarus and N. Surendran, had earlier said magistrate Nik Nur Amalina Mat Zaidan ordered Balamurugan’s release.

She also ordered him to receive immediate treatment for the bleeding from his nose and mouth.

Balraj and Kumar were met outside the South Klang police headquarters yesterday.

Balraj joined Balamurugan’s wife, Natthanan Yoochomsook, 38, and her daughter Yanika, 14, as they lodged a police report requesting investigation into his death.

They also requested a second post-mortem and the suspension of the policemen involved in his arrest and detention.

“The pathologist who conducted the post-mortem confirmed there were bruises and scratches on the body,” Surendran said.

The family also wanted an independent investigation into Balamurugan’s death.

They also requested Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar and Home Ministry to explain why police did not send Balamurugan for treatment despite the magistrate’s order.


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