This is serious and very damaging…
(So, this was “suicide due to guilt feeling” back then but with a twist now – it is driven to suicide by aggressive interrogation. No matter how we look at it, Teoh Beng Hock should not be dead in the first place – it is a tragic loss and failure by MACC to conduct its business in the right way)
Free Malaysia Today reported:-
“It was found that he was not killed. But he was burdened and pressured by the interrogation, coupled with Teoh being a weak-willed person which triggered him to commit suicide,” he said.
Nazri said the RCI also found that MACC officers had no intention or reason to kill Teoh but only wanted to force a confession from him as a witness in their investigations into the alleged abuse of state allocations by DAP state assemblymen in Selangor.
“And his suicide is supported by forensic psychiatrist Dr Paul Mullen, who was engaged by the Bar Council,” he added.
Nazri said that Mullen noted that Teoh’s risk of committing suicide soared drastically due to the long hours of aggressive interrogation.
Interestingly RPK in his series to uncover the killers of the late Customs Officer Ahmad Sarbaini (who died in a very similar way) wrote this:-
Sheikh Niza brought Ahmad Sarbaini to KUS Mohd Fauzi’s office, which was next door to the pantry (remember what happened to Teoh Beng Hock). Here, he was verbally abused. KUS Mohd Fauzi called Ahmad Sarbaini a disgrace to the Royal Malaysian Customs, that he was not fit to wear their uniform. Rather shaken up, Ahmad Sarbaini pleaded for pity and a drink of water.
Shockingly, they brought Ahmad Sarbaini to the pantry. Incredibly, as punishment for attempting to retract his ‘confession’, Mohd Fauzi ordered him to climb out of the window and forced him to stand on the ledge.
KUS Mohd Fauzi wanted Ahmad Sarbaini to ponder and reflect on his actions while standing on the edge as “orang macam kau ni lebih baik mati dari hidup menyusahkan orang lain”.
Nervously, Ahmad Sarbaini climbed onto the windowsill as ordered by Mohd Fauzi who continued taunting and abusing him with insults. Sheikh Niza merely looked on. In that split second, Ahmad Sarbaini’s belt got stuck on the outer part of the window and he lost his balance and his life.
Does this equivalent to “aggressive, relentless, oppressive and unscrupulous” interrogation as well if what RPK is claiming is true (he wrote a similar story when Teoh was found dead)?
I am not sure whether the Royal Commission’s findings that Teoh was not killed but committed suicide due to aggressive interrogation is the kind of justice we expected to get at the end – almost 2 years after Teoh Beng Hock was found dead at MACC’s premise but it is still better than the previous ruling “he was not killed, he did not commit suicide”. It is not a closure though – there are plenty of repercussions ahead for the Government, MACC, the police and the AG.
RCI returned a verdict of suicide due to aggressive interrogation and noted Selangor MACC office namely brutality in interviews, poor interview skills, poor reporting, arrogance, poor relationship with the public and other agencies, insufficient use and understanding of the capacity of modern technology, possible problems with interaction between intelligence-gathering and evidence gathering and lack of discipline (remember the one where the officer was watching porn in office).
The next course of action would be on whether:-
1. Criminal action taken on the 3 MACC officers who deemed to have conducted the “aggressive, relentless, oppressive and unscrupulous” interrogation which let Teoh to break down and end up committing suicide.
Just because they did not pull the trigger, it does not mean they are innocent. Just because they did not “intend” for someone to die but through their action, someone did, it does not mean they are not punishable. When one is not found guilty of cold murder, there are still provisions under the law to find the person guilty under manslaughter.
Will we see the AG now “aggressively and relentlessly” proceed with manslaughter proceedings against the 3 MACC officers? Or it is going to be business as usual for these officers who only pursuing the interrogation based on what many perceived to be part of an evil, dirty political scheme to disrupt the administration of the Pakatan led state (remember this nonsense?)? And it is now found that the investigations that cause Teoh Beng Hock to die was done solely on an informant’s “mere belief” and without supporting facts!
Yes, it is a suicide but please consider this – Teoh is young with a promising career ahead and soon going to get married and have a kid. He was not suicidal.
And until the MACC’s interrogations, he was just a normal man, minding his own business. Damn, he was not even a suspect in the matter. In that respect, those MACC officers who pursued the interrogations should not be let off the hook so freely. Any punishments should be severe enough as a reminder for others that such recklessness and abuse of power is not tolerated in any degree and in no matter what is the purpose may be.
2. A complete overhaul of the whole MACC from the ground, all the way to the top.
MACC took over from the old ACA which many already deemed corrupt but after Teoh’s death and lack of similar devotion to investigate corruption reports on politicians from the ruling political parties, it seemed only the MACC is no different than ACA other in namesake (in some sense, worst with 2 unexplained deaths on its hands).
Seriously, generally not many think that MACC will ever change and the outcome of the RCI was something that has been predicted from the very start and it will be the same case for Ahmad Sarbaini. I mean if MACC have been really serious in combating corruption and blatant use of public funds from day 1, they would have dragged certain politician from the east by his neck and hung him up high and dry as a lesson for others.
Nothing happen back then, nothing will likely to happen now. Some shadow-play here and there is expected to be displayed to the general public to show “something serious” is being done to improve the organization, perhaps but nothing concrete is expected to materialized though.
Only with a total change of Government will we see any complete overhaul of the system that seemed corrupt to the core and beyond any redemption. We have no other choice whatsoever now. Otherwise, it will be another suicide and once again, the verdict would “not killed but driven to suicide – case closed”. Forced suicide is the last thing we want to see.
The Government had already lost the goodwill and international image with its hard stand on Bersih 2.0. Will they do the same by standing idle on the Royal Commission findings on Teoh Beng Hock’s death now? Will they ever put Teoh Beng Hock’s case to a proper closure?
- Royal Commission’s Shocker (dinmerican.wordpress.com)
- Malaysia rules harsh interrogation caused suicide (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- MACC: The Destroyer of our Public Institutions (dinmerican.wordpress.com)