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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Couple charged with maid’s murder


The couple keeping their faces covered when they were brought to the magistrate’s court in Petaling Jaya yesterday to be charged with killing their maid at their home. — NST picture by Nik Hariff Hassan

The couple keeping their faces covered when they were brought to the magistrate’s court in Petaling Jaya yesterday to be charged with killing their maid at their home. — NST picture by Nik Hariff Hassan

PETALING JAYA: A couple were charged yesterday with the murder of their Indonesian maid, Isti Komariyah, who had worked for them for more than two years. 

No plea was recorded from former technician Fong Kong Meng, 55, and his wife, Teoh Ching Yen, 53, at the magistrate’s court.

Teoh had the charge read to her in Cantonese. Both Fong and Teoh kept their heads bowed in the dock.

They were represented by separate counsel.They were charged with committing the offence at their home at No. 90, Jalan SS2/6, Sea Park, here, between July 1 last year and June 5.

The charge under Section 302 of the Penal Code carries the mandatory death sentence upon conviction.

Selangor head of prosecution deputy public prosecutor Mohd Azari Harun informed the court that the post-mortem report was ready but that they were waiting for the chemist’s report.

He then asked the court for a mention date pending transfer of the case to the High Court.

Fong’s lawyer, M.S. Guok, informed the court that his client was suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes and urged the court to ensure he received medical attention while under detention.

Magistrate Mohamad Ibrahim Mohammad Ghulam advised the lawyer to liaise with the prison authorities on the matter before fixing July 18 for mention.

Fong is to be remanded at the Sungai Buloh prison while Teoh will be detained at the Kajang prison.

It was reported that Isti, 26, was declared dead on arrival at University Malaya Medical Centre on June 5.

Doctors examining her found bruises and scratch marks on her back, arms and forehead, both new and old.

Hospital authorities, suspicious of the circumstances surrounding Isti’s death, alerted the police.

It was also reported that authorities were attempting to recover Isti’s salary as she had not been paid since she started working for the couple in December 2008.

Meanwhile, in an immediate response, the Indonesian embassy here expressed satisfaction with the speed of the investigations.

Embassy Information, Social and Cultural Affairs Minister Counsellor Suryana Sastradiredja said they had appointed a local counsel to hold a watching brief for the Indonesian government at the trial.Suryana said the news would bring relief to Isti’s family and other Indonesians.

He said several high-ranking officials from the embassy had spent two days with Isti’s family at their hometown in Banyuwangi in East Java when they accompanied the body there for burial. -- NST

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