Immigration officer acquitted of receiving bribe

Fadley Faisal

An Immigration officer indicted with accepting money as a bribe was acquitted of the allegations by the Intermediate Court last Monday.

Judge Lailatul Zubaidah binti Haji Mohd Hussain found inconsistencies in the evidence supporting the indictments against Haji Haironi.

The defendant was charged on four counts under Section 6 (a) of the Penal Code of receiving a BND40 gratification from Indonesian Siti Komayah binti Kamat, to facilitate the extension of her social visit pass.

It was the prosecution’s case that on one occasion in August 2010 and three separate occasions in September 2010, he received these gratifications to extend her social visit pass for a period of two weeks.

The prosecution called in five witnesses to prove its case, and applied to tender two statements recorded from the defendant.

Defence counsel Pengiran Khairul Nizam bin Pengiran Haji Mohd Yassin of Messrs Yusof Halim & Partners objected to the statements, which had been recorded by Immigration and Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) officers.

After a voir dire, the court ruled that the statements were not recorded voluntarily and thus deemed inadmissible.

Without the statements, the court assessed the evidence presented by the prosecution and found that as the stamp was only provided to the defendant on September 1, 2010, there was no link between him and the first charge.

The court also found Siti Komayah to be an unreliable witness, especially in view of her agreeing with the prosecution’s evidence and that she had identified the defendant only from a photograph showed to her during the investigation.

It was also in evidence that the stamp, when not in use, was kept in a locked cabinet where it was accessible by all officers within the section.

The court also found inconsistencies in the alleged gratification given to the defendant.

The court did not find the prosecution to have proven its case beyond reasonable doubt, and acquitted the defendant of all charges.