SHAH ALAM: The first witness who testified in a civil lawsuit into Altantuya Shaariibuu's murder disclosed that the slain Mongolian woman was in a relationship with political analyst, Abdul Razak Baginda.
Burmaa Oyunchimeg, 37, who is the cousin of Altantuya, said that she first met Abdul Razak when Altantuya introduced him to her at a hotel in Hong Kong towards the end of 2004.
"At that time, I was living in Hong Kong and she (Altantuya) had come from Mongolia for a holiday to visit me.
"When she introduced me to him (Abdul Razak), she told me that he was a friend, but later told me that they were in a relationship," she said when questioned by counsel Sangeet Kaur Deo in front of High Court judge Datuk Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera, here, today.
Burmaa said Altantuya also told her that the Hong Kong trip was for business.
The witness said the second time she met Abdul Razak was in Shanghai, China, in January 2005, when both she and Altantuya flew in from Hong Kong and they met Abdul Razak at the airport.
Burmaa said the third meeting was in March 2005 in Singapore, adding that Altantuya and Abdul Razak had already arrived there before her.
The sales associate said after she and Altantuya flew back to Mongolia from Singapore in March 2005, Altantuya showed her a photo of herself, Abdul Razak and a deputy prime minister.
Burmaa said Altantuya also showed pictures of her trip to Paris with Abdul Razak.
"When we were back in Mongolia, she (Altantuya) showed me pictures of her trip to Paris with Abdul Razak.
“I remember I saw a picture of three people, two men and Altantuya. I asked her who they were, and she said one was the deputy prime minister and the other was Razak who worked with him and do business together.
"I asked her if they were brothers because of the same name. She said no, but they were best friends, business partners and worked together,” she said.
On June 4, 2007, the parents of Altantuya, Dr Shaariibuu Setev and wife Altantsetseg Sanjaa and their two grandsons, Mungunshagai Bayarjargal and Altanshagai Munkhtulga, filed the RM100 million suit against two former policemen, Azilah Hadri and Sirul Azhar Umar, Abdul Razak and the Malaysian government.
However, Altanshagai Munkhtulga’s name was later removed as a plaintiff as he died two years ago.
In the statement of claim, the family alleged that Altantuya’s death had caused them mental shock and psychological trauma, entitling them to be compensated with exemplary and aggravated damages.
Abdul Razak was charged with abetting Azilah and Sirul Azhar in the murder of Altantuya, 28, in 2006, but was acquitted by the Shah Alam High Court in October 2008 without calling for his defence, while Azilah and Sirul Azhar were convicted of the offence in 2009.
On Aug 23, 2013, the Court of Appeal allowed Azilah and Sirul Azhar’s appeal and acquitted them of the charge.
However, on Jan 13, 2015, the Federal Court allowed the prosecution’s appeal and set aside the Court of Appeal’s decision. It found Sirul Azhar and Azilah guilty and sentenced them to death by hanging.
The trial continues tomorrow with Dr Shaariibuu providing his testimony. -– BERNAMA