The family of late model Ivana Smit has asked the Dutch Public Prosecution Service to investigate the teen’s death in Kuala Lumpur after two autopsies showed that her injuries were not consistent with a fall.
- Well-known lawyer criticised Malaysian authorities of poor investigation, closing case within a day
- Family to hire award-winning UK investigator to find out the truth
Last Saturday, Ivana’s body arrived at the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport at 5.30am local time and was sent to the Alkmaar Medical Centre for an autopsy.
The Telegraaf reported on Wednesday that Dutch forensic pathologist Dr Frank van der Goot found some of the deceased’s injuries were not consistent with a fall from a great height.
A second autopsy carried out on Sunday again found injuries inconsistent with a fall.
The report said further investigations were being conducted and the results are expected by the first week of January.
“Ivana was Dutch. So the Dutch government also has the heavy responsibility of finding out how she died. Especially if the country in which she died fails”, Sebas Diekstra, the lawyer helping the Smit family in this case, told the Telegraaf.
The report said the Smit family spent Christmas day in a funeral home in Roermond, where some family members viewed Ivana’s body for the first time.
“That was terrible. An incredibly confrontational and emotional day,” Ivana’s uncle Fred Agenjo told the newspaper.
Agenjo had acted as spokesperson for the family since Ivana’s father, Marcel Smit, collapsed from an apparent heart attack during the weekend he returned from Malaysia, and is currently under medication.
“It was one of the worst things I’ve experienced. It is now three weeks since she died. Then the remains still have the shape of a body, but it is no longer Ivana. The funeral director did her utmost, but it was very difficult.”
In the Dec 7 incident, Ivana,19 was found dead on the balcony of the sixth floor of The Capsquare Residences on Jalan Dang Wangi, where she had stayed with an American and his wife on the 20th floor.
Her naked body was found on a balcony on the 6th floor. Earlier, she was reported to have gone out drinking at an entertainment outlet with the couple.
On Dec 22, Sebas Diekstra and Ivana’s uncle Melvin Smit appeared on a live TV talk show in Holland. In the night’s episode of Dutch TV channel RTL 4’s ‘RTL Late Night’, Smit’s murder took centre-stage.
Melvin told the show that the family could not accept the fact that Ivana had died due to an accident.
“It is too easy to say it is ‘sudden death’. We cannot accept the result.
“The lack of involvement of the American couple who Ivana was last seen with was also baffling,” he told the show.
The couple Ivana was with has been charged with drug-related crimes in a Kuala Lumpur court and released on bail.
A magistrates court granted Alexander William Johnson, 44, bail at RM4,500 after he claimed trial.
His wife, Lunara Almazkyzy, 30, was allowed bail at RM2,500 with two sureties after she pleaded guilty to her charge.
Both were charged under Section 15(1)(a) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 with the consumption of illegal drugs, are liable for up to two years’ jail, a fine of no more than RM5,000 or both upon conviction.
The court previously withheld bail pending verification of their travel documents’ validity.
Bail was allowed after immigration checks revealed their passports and visas to be valid.
Pending lab results of urine sample tests on both accused, the magistrate fixed Jan 8 and Jan 19 as Johnson’s and Almazkyzy’s next court dates, respectively.
A military man turned lawyer, Diekstra is famous in The Netherlands for helping families of those who have died under suspicious circumstances.
He had criticised the Malaysian investigation into Smit’s death, calling it shoddy and riddled with holes.
He said the initial probe appeared to be an open-and-shut case, as Smit’s death was immediately “parked as an accident” by Malaysian police.
In an interview with FMT, Diesktra talked about what he had said on national television.
“I told them on the TV show that the mere fact that the case was closed within a day was proof that there was poor investigation by the Malaysian authorities.
“And sadly, the Netherlands government does not dare to interfere in the Malaysian investigation,” Diesktra was quoted saying.
Dr van de Goot, who was also present as part of the audience in the talk show, and Diesktra are well-known personalities on Dutch TV as they appear on a reality show ‘Moord of Zelfmoord?’ (Murder or Suicide?).The two men are the consultant pathologist and lawyer in the show.
The renowned Dutch pathologist told the show that Ivana’s family had tried to bring him to Kuala Lumpur to carry out a second post-mortem, but this was not allowed by the Malaysian authorities.
Diesktra was a former decorated major with the Dutch military police, who left the force to become a lawyer a few years ago, specialising in murder cases.
He is a former police detective who has worked on high-profile investigations and has won a Peabody award for his work.
“We are now raising funds to hire Williams-Thomas. He will cost us 13,000 pounds sterling with VAT or 18,000 Euros (about RM87,000).
“We think he can find out what exactly happened, including the necessary evidence to make it stick…and obtain the righteousness the Netherlands, Malaysia and even the rest of the world crave for in this case,” Melvin was quoted saying.
Ivana will be buried in Roermond, a town in her birth state of Limburg, Netherlands, this Saturday at 12.30pm.