Aug 6, 2007

Nik Sapeia Identified As Man Who Sprayed Tun Mahathir

KOTA BAHARU, Aug 6 (Bernama) -- A witness today identified businessman Nik Sapaeia Nik Yusof as the white-haired man who sprayed a substance at former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad at the airport here last year.

C/Insp Fauziah Che Mat, assistant audio video analyst with the Royal Malaysia Police Forensic Laboratory, identified Nik Sapeia from one of three still images tendered in the Magistrate's Court.

She said she was asked by investigating officer ASP Baharin Mohd Noor to analyse a recording of the spraying incident which took place just as Tun Dr Mahathir stood up in a four-wheel drive vehicle at the airport to address the crowd.

"After looking repeatedly at the recording of what happened, both before and after the spraying, I found that the white-haired man had done it," she said pointing to Nik Sapeia.

The three still images taken from the recording of the incident which lasted 23 minutes 10 seconds had been enlarged for clarity.

Nik Sapeia, who is also a politician, 53, is charged with causing hurt to Dr Mahathir by spraying a hazardous substance at him and three other people -- former Pasir Mas MP Datuk Ibrahim Ali, Mohd Nasir Muda and Suberi Sahidan -- at the Sultan Ismail Petra Airport in Pengkalan Chepa on July 28 last year.

Yesterday Fauziah told the court that the three photos were kept in a file in the computer and later printed.

She made a full report on her analysis after that.

She said the other two images showed Dr Mahathir with the white-haired man.

Asked by defence counsel Zainal Abidin Mustaffa whether she submitted her analysis for checking by a more expert officer, she said the post of expert analyst had not been filled then and she was the only analyst around.

Fauziah also said that when she made the analysis, she did not know Nik Sapeia and the investigating also did not describe him nor reveal his identity.

"He asked me to analyse the spraying incident. He did not give his (accused's) identity. He said the spraying was done by an individual there. I only knew after looking repeatedly at the recording," she added.

She said she did not analyse other individuals in the recording.

Asked why she did not analyse seven other suspects as contained in the brief report given her by ASP Baharin, she said this was because there were no images of the seven in the recording.

The hearing continues tomorrow.

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