Altantuyaa killer Sirul freed from Australian immigration detention

FORMER special actions unit (UTK) member Sirul Azhar Umar, who was convicted of killing the Mongolian translator Altantuyaa Shaariibuu in 2006 has been released from custody in Australia after being detained for almost nine years.

Sirul was released following a High Court decision last week that ruled that non-citizens who were unable to be deported could no longer be detained indefinitely by immigration authorities, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Sirul, who is in his early 50s, has carried the secrets of the killing with him since he escaped in January 2015 to Australia.

He was arrested on an Interpol notice and detained at Sydney’s Villawood immigration detention centre, but the Australian government would not send him back to Malaysia as he faced execution over the shooting of the pregnant Altantuyaa in a jungle outside Kuala Lumpur.

He and fellow hitman Azilah Hadri, who was also a government bodyguard then blew up her body with explosives.

The Australian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur informed Malaysian government officials about the High Court’s decision.

Also confirming the news is his son Shukri Azam Sirul Azhar who is now living in Australia.

“He (Sirul) is with me now, and I am handling everything on his behalf,” he said in an email on Sunday.

The two accused successfully overturned the conviction at the Court of Appeal in 2013 but the Federal Court in 2015 decided to uphold their conviction and death sentence.

Furthermore, Sirul had fled to Australia before the Federal Court announced its decision. The Federal Court then issued an arrest warrant against him. – Nov 12, 2023


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