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Two-year old toddler killed in exorcism by parents, relatives
BUKIT MERTAJAM: Police have arrested seven relatives including the parents of a dead two-year-old toddler after the victim was killed in an apparent exorcism ritual that had gone awfully wrong yesterday.
The toddler -- a girl -- the only child of an engineer and an alternative medical practitioner from Taman Bukit Minyak in Bukit Tengah here, was believed to have died from asphyxiation.
The victim was apparently pinned down by the seven adults and their Indonesian maid during the deadly ritual held to chase away evil spirits in the family.
Seberang Perai Tengah district police chief Assistant Commissioner Azman Abd Lah said police rushed to the double-storey terrace house after receiving a distress call from the victim's uncle at about 10pm.
Azman said the police team who stormed into the master-bedroom located on the upper-floor found the family members covered underneath a blanket.
"At that time they were performing the ritual by pinning down the little girl with their bodies," he told Pressmen at the scene early today.
He said the policemen quickly pulled the victim who was trapped underneath the relatives but she had already dead.
"We believe the victim had died from asphyxiation during the ritual exercise," he added.
Azman said police had detained the victim's parents, her grandmother, aunts, cousins and the family's Indonesian maid.
He added that the suspects, aged between 16 and 67 years old, would be taken to the Bukit Mertajam Magistrate court this morning for remand proceeding.
The toddler's body was sent to the Seberang Jaya Hospital for a post-mortem.
Azman said the case has been classified as murder.