Thursday, January 21, 2021

Man to hang for rape, murder of nurse

Prosecution says Mohammad Awari Ahmad's act of slashing and raping the woman was witnessed by her 5-year-old son.

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A former sawmill worker who raped a nurse after slashing her on the neck will be hanged for his act, having failed in his last attempt to set aside his death sentence after the Federal Court in Putrajaya dismissed his appeal today.

A three-member panel led by Court of Appeal president Rohana Yusuf unanimously dismissed the appeal of Mohammad Awari Ahmad, 27, against the death sentence handed down by the Kota Bharu High Court after finding him guilty of murdering the wife of an auxiliary policeman.

Sitting with Rohana were judges Vernon Ong Lam Kiat and Hasnah Mohammed Hashim.

Deputy public prosecutor Nazran Mohd Sham had asked the court to dismiss the appeal and maintain the death sentence meted out to Awari for his act, which was watched by the victim’s five-year-old son.

“The act of the appellant was brutal, aggressive and vicious. After slashing her neck, the appellant raped her while she was bleeding from the wound.

“The victim sustained 11 injuries on the neck and hands. In this case, the appellant used a machete to slash the right and left side of the victim’s neck. This clearly showed that the appellant had intention to kill,” he said.

Besides slashing and raping the victim, Nazran said Awari had also stolen RM200 and a mobile phone belonging to her. He then went to “celebrate” by drinking seven bottles of liquor at a restaurant.

According to the case evidence, the victim’s husband returned home from work at 2am on March 1, 2015 and saw his wife, who was naked, covered with a blanket on the road in front of their house. He then rushed to his father’s house nearby to seek help.

He found his three children, then aged six months, three years and five years, on a blood-soaked mattress in the house.

The woman was sent to Gua Musang Hospital but died at 6.40am the same day. Before dying, she was able to write a note stating the identity of the person who raped, slashed and robbed her.

Awari, in his defence, said the victim had woken up and was shocked to find him in the room after he broke into the house to steal.

His lawyer, Ahmad Nizam Mohamed, earlier said his client had no intention to kill and that he should be punished for culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

But Rohana, when handing down the decision, said after studying the record of appeal and grounds of judgment by the High Court judge, affirmed by the Court of Appeal, the court was satisfied that there was no error made by either court.

She said the High Court judge had studied the evidence of the case and decided on the element of intent that was established by the prosecution.

She also said the supporting evidence, such as eyewitness accounts, showed that the evidence in the appeal record on the accused’s action was very strong.

“We find there is no reason to make us change the decision of the two courts. With this, we find the conviction of the appellant is safe. On these grounds, we dismiss the appeal by the appellant and affirm the conviction and sentence,” she added.

Awari, who appeared calm after the decision was handed down, was also convicted by the High Court of raping the woman and sentenced to 18 years in jail and 12 strokes of the cane.

However, today’s proceeding was on his appeal against the death sentence.

He was charged with raping and murdering the woman between 12.20am and 2am in a house in Kampung Batu Papan, Gua Musang, Kelantan, on March 1, 2015.

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