The Federal Court in Kuala Lumpur today fixed Sept 4 for lawyers representing Altantuya Shaariibuu’s family and the government to further address the issue of vicarious liability.
This followed the Court of Appeal’s decision to reinstate the government as a defendant in a lawsuit filed by the family of the slain Mongolian model.
On Tuesday, the Head of the Appellate and Trial Division in the Attorney-General’s Chambers, Nik Suhaimi Nik Sulaiman, had urged the Federal Court to grant the government leave to appeal against the decision.
Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak David Wong Dak Wah chaired the three-member bench comprised of Federal Court judges Alizatul Khair Osman and P Nallini.
Vicarious liability refers to a situation where an employer is held liable for the tort of its employees.
Previously, the family’s lawyer Ramkarpal Singh had objected to the leave application, saying that the two cops – chief inspector Azilah Hadri and corporal Sirul Azhar Umar – were agents of the government when they committed the murder.
“The court wants additional submission in relation to the issues of vicarious liability,” Sangeet Kaur, who also appeared for the family, told the media.
Altantuya’s family filed the RM100 million civil suit against political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda, two cops, and the government in 2007.
The family members comprised Altantuya’s father Shaariibuu Setev, his wife Altantsetseg Sanjaa, as well as two of their grandsons, Mungunshagai Bayarjargal and Altanshagai Munkhtulga.
However, Altanshagai’s name was removed as the plaintiff following his death two years ago.
Altantuya was murdered in Shah Alam on Oct 19, 2006, with her remains blown up using military-grade explosives.
Sirul and Azilah, bodyguards to the then deputy prime minister Najib Abdul Razak, were convicted of the murder, while Razak was acquitted.
The conviction was overturned by the Court of Appeal in 2013, and Sirul fled the country for Australia before the Federal Court upheld the conviction in 2015.
Australia reportedly refused to deport Sirul until after Malaysia abolishes its death penalty. – Malaysiakini