Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Teoh Inquest: Death due to fall

Teoh Died From Fall From High Place - Forensic Expert

SHAH ALAM, Aug 11 (Bernama) -- Political aide Teoh Beng Hock died of multiple injuries resulting from a fall from a high place, a forensic expert told the inquest into his death here on Tuesday.

Dr Khairul Azman Ibrahim, senior medical consultant of the Forensic Department, Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital in Klang, said there was no evidence of injuries on the body which were consistent with a struggle prior to death.

He also did not find any traces of blood on the window of the14th floor office of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) at Plaza Masalam here, from which Teoh was believed to have fallen, although there were broken bits and pieces around.

Dr Khairul Azman also confirmed that there were no defensive wounds on Teoh's body based on the post-mortem conducted on July 17.

"In my opinion, I did not see any obvious defensive injuries on any part of the deceased's body, except injuries from from the impact of the fall," he said.

Teoh was found dead on the fifth floor corridor of Plaza Masalam on July 16, hours after giving a witness statement to the MACC in an investigation into alleged abuse of Selangor state funds.

To a question from government-appointed lawyer Tan Hock Chuan on the estimated time of death, Dr Khairul said that based on the condition of the body which had not decomposed yet, Teoh died less than 36 hours before the post-mortem.

"I also examined the body at the scene at 7.30pm on July 16. I found the body already stiff and in my opinion, Teoh died six to eight hours before 7.30pm.

However, he said, he was told that the security guard found the body at 2pm so Teoh probably died before that time.

Asked about the position of Teoh's body upon landing, he said that based on the injuries, Teoh was believed to have landed on his right leg first with the body leaning slightly to the right and the buttock probably landed at the same time as the other leg.

"There is also the possibility that the leaned forward based on the broken ribs and injury to the wrist," he said.

Dr Khairul Azman said he went to the scene at 6.40pm on July 16 to get a clearer picture of how Teoh sustained the injuries.

Teoh's body was covered with a plastic sheet and when the sheet was lifted he saw the body lying on its side with the left hand on top and the right under the body.

The left leg was shoeless and resting on the right leg and the left shoe was found not far from the body, he said, adding that there were traces of blood flowing from the mouth.

He said he looked up to see from which floor of the building Teoh could have fallen and saw a widow, which was open wider that all the other windows, across from the body.

He was told by the investigating officer, ASP Ahmad Nazri Zainal, that the window was on he 14th floor of the building.

Later, on the 14th floor, he saw the window and also the place where Teoh was interrogated by the MACC and the place where he was last seen resting and alive, he added. Bernama

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