Death of a politician : Murder most foul

Derwin Pereira of The Foreign Desk wraps up a trial involving brutal murder, black magic and money that went on for 69-days in Malaysia.

“MAKE sure you don’t miss. Otherwise, we are all finished,” bomoh Mohamad Affandi Abdul Rahman ordered his assistant Juraimi Husin on the fateful night of Umno politician Mazlan Idris’ murder.

Juraimi was waiting for the go-ahead. When Affandi gave the signal, he charged into the washroom with an axe and severed Datuk Mazlan’s neck with two swift blows. He died instantly.

He went on to chop the body into 18 parts. This included five chunks of flesh and muscle cut from his arms and thighs.

Meanwhile, Affandi and his wife Maznah Ismail, better known as Mona Fandey, took a shower and packed some clothes. They headed for Kuala Lumpur for a week with their seven-year-old daughter Mazdiana.

Juraimi stayed on and disposed of Datuk Mazlan’s remains by collecting them in a basin and burying them in the storeroom of the house. He burned his victim’s clothes and bag behind the house. The next day, he cemented the floor of the storeroom.

Gory details of one of Malaysia’s most bizarre murder case emerged from a 69-day trial that ended last Thursday.

A seven-member jury at the High Court in Temerloh, south-west of Pahang, deliberated for an hour before unanimously finding the three guilty of Datuk Mazlan’s murder. They were sentenced to death.

It all happened on July 2 last year, behind the doors of an abandoned house now covered with overgrown lallang in Kampung Peruas in Pahang where the trio lured the politician to his death in a black magic ritual.

Conman medium Affandi, 37, had invited Datuk Mazlan to his house with the promise of helping him attain his political goals with magical powers.

The Pahang state assemblyman for Batu Talam had sought their help to oust his political rivals. The politician went to his house at about 11 pm in his Mercedes Benz with M$300,000 after chairing an Umno meeting in Raub.

He said he wanted to undergo a bathing ritual because he was tired.

The couple gave him a mani bunga (flower bath) – a ritual cleansing bath supposed to wash away bad luck.

Juraimi, with an axe in hand, was waiting in the kitchen outside the washroom for a signal to kill the politician.

He had sharpened an axe and a parang and dug a hole in the storeroom at the back of the house four days ago.

Datuk Mazlan rested on the floor with his eyes closed, clad only in a towel. His head was perched on a plastic basin. Affandi squatted by his side as Mona put an orchid flower on his forehead and washed him with water from the basin.

At about this time, Mazdiana awoke and cried and Affandi had to leave the washroom to coax his daughter back to sleep.

Right after this, he gave the signal to his assistant to finish off Datuk Mazlan and walked over to the washroom to see Juraimi hacking the politician to death.

During the trial, one of the longest and most sensational in Malaysia’s court history, Affandi and Juraimi testified under oath. Mona chose to give a statement from the dock.

Juraimi, 24, testified that he was not conscious of his actions at the time of the killing. He said that Affandi had told him to do his job well “or else we will be in deep trouble”.

Affandi, however, said that he and his wife did not plan to murder the politician as his death would not have benefited them.

He said Datuk Mazlan owed him M$2 million (S$1.1 million) for a “magic cane” and a Malay songkok, both believed to have belonged to former Indonesian president Sukarno.

In their defence, the couple said they were not aware that Juraimi had planned to kill the politician and they fled the scene in panic after the murder.

“While I was wiping Datuk’s face and forehead, Juraimi entered and, the next thing I knew, a big axe had hit Datuk’s throat,” said Affandi.

“The first blow stuck at the throat and it was swiftly followed by another.”

The bomoh said that when he asked Juraimi why he did that, his assistant replied: “This kind of person should die.”

He said that after he and his wife left the washroom, they heard the sound of multiple blows from behind the doors of the washroom where Juraimi was.

In her statement, Mona denied any involvement in the murder. But prosecutor Zakaria Sam rejected it, saying: “She did not give any justification as to why she did not report the murder to the police.”

He added that Mona and her husband went on a shopping spree barely eight hours after the murder. Their buys included a M$125,000 Mercedes Benz, which was paid for in M$1,000 notes.

Several bank officers had testified that Datuk Mazlan had withdrawn almost M$300,000 from three bank accounts on July 2 last year. The amount was issued in M$1,000 notes.

The prosecution’s case was that Mona, Affandi and Juraimi had conspired and planned to kill Datuk Mazlan to steal his money, share certificates and land title deeds.

It was murder most foul.

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