Crime & Courts

Teenager and boyfriend claim trial to kidnapping baby [NSTTV]

BUKIT MERTAJAM: A 14-year-old girl and her boyfriend were jointly charged at the magistrate's court here today with kidnapping a 9-month-old baby girl last Tuesday.

The girl and her boyfriend, an 18-year-old part-time restaurant worker, claimed trial to the offence when the charge, framed under Section 363 of the Penal Code for kidnapping, was read to them before magistrate Nurul Rasyidah Mohd Akit.

Both the accused were calm throughout the proceeding.

They were jointly accused of committing the offence at Pangsapuri Idaman in Taman Pauh Prai near here at about 5.30pm on Aug 23.

The offence carries a maximum seven years' imprisonment, and offenders shall also be liable to a fine, upon conviction.

Deputy public prosecutor Mohammad Syafiq Nasrullah Saleem Ali did not offer any bail, pointing to the fact that it was a non-bailable offence and the seriousness of the offence.

"However, as an alternative, if the court decides to grant both the accused bail, I would like to request for a high bail with strict conditions."

Fatin Nabila Hussin, who represented both the accused, said the court had the discretion to grant them bail.

"In this case, the first accused is just a teenager, underage and very young.

"She is the youngest among three siblings and is staying with her 75-year-old grandfather and 68-year-old grandmother after her parents divorced. I was told her parents have not been in touch with their children after the divorce.

"Also, this is her first offence. As far as I am concerned, my client is a law-abiding citizen," she said.

As for the 18-year-old, Fatin Nabila said he was a young adult and had never committed any offence before.

She said her client was the second among five siblings and had to work part-time in a restaurant to help his two younger siblings, aged 10 and 11.

"His mother is sick and his father does not have a full-time job. He (the accused) is working two days a week, earning RM50 a day.

"He is also a good son and has never committed any offence," she said, adding that both the accused needed their family members' support and guidance.

Nurul Rasyidah then fixed Oct 3 for mention of the case pending submission of documents.

She also granted both the accused RM5,000 bail each, with one surety.

She said for the first accused (the girl), her bailor needed to be either one of her parents.

Fatin Nabila said she had contacted the girl's father, who agreed to bail her out.

"However, he has something urgent and has asked me to be in court today," she added.

It was reported that five people were detained to assist in the probe into the kidnapping of a 9-month-old baby girl at an apartment in Bukit Tengah here last Tuesday.

Apart from the girl, who is a school dropout, and her boyfriend, also detained were the boy's mother, 43, his stepfather, 30, and a male friend, 18.

The baby girl was found safe in the care of the boyfriend's parents.

The remand orders for the girl and her boyfriend were subsequently extended, while the others were released on police bail.

Based on initial investigation, the girl had allegedly taken the baby from her grandmother, who worked as a nanny.

When the baby's 24-year-old mother went to pick up her daughter, she was told by the grandmother that her granddaughter had taken the baby when she was performing prayers.

Following the incident, the baby's 26-year-old father then lodged a police report at the Bukit Tengah police station.

The girl had told police during the investigation that she had taken the baby girl because she liked her very much and wanted to care for the baby like her own child.

She, however, told her boyfriend's mother that the child was hers, from a previous relationship.

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