No woman was present when three suspects shot dead, say police.
The police have denied allegations that a woman was also present in a Volkswagen Polo car in which three men were shot dead in a shooting incident at Batu Arang, near Rawang, on Saturday.
Selangor police chief Datuk Noor Azam Jamaludin said investigations at the scene found only three suspects believed to be involved in robbery cases around Rawang, Batu Arang and Kundang.
He said this in response to allegations by one of the family members of the suspects killed in the incident that the authorities did not wish to disclose information about the suspect’s wife who was with him at the time of the incident, and has remained missing until now.
Noor Azam said if there is a report from the family on the missing woman, they would classify the case as a missing person’s report and look for her.
“I would like to stress that there was no woman with the three men who were shot dead, and we (the police) only retaliated after the suspects opened fire against the police first.
“Furthermore, we did not know that one of the men killed was a Sri Lankan who was a permanent resident in the United Kingdom.”
The shooting of the three men, said to be involved in a spate of house break-ins, has caused an uproar among social activists, who alleged that this was another case of police high-handedness.
The missing woman has been identified as 35-year-old Moganambal Govindasamy. Her husband, Janarthan Vijayaratnam, Moganambal’s brother Thavaselvan and a friend, Maghendran Santhirasegaran, were killed in the shootout on Saturday night.
Moganambal’s family had said she and her husband returned to Malaysia for a visit late last month after staying in the UK for six years.
The family lawyer, Sivahnanthan Ragava, said that it was ridiculous for police to allege that Moganambal and her husband were criminals wanted by the police as they had just come down for a visit after living abroad for six years. The couple have three children.
Noor Azam defended his men, saying they returned fire after the suspects began shooting at the police team.
“They opened fire first, my men returned fire to defend themselves,” he said.
Noor Azam further denied that police made up a false story to cover their tracks, adding they had done nothing wrong in the operation.
Earlier, family members of the three men lodged a report with the Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) requesting a full investigation be done into the incident.
Meanwhile, Suhakam Commissioner Jerald Joseph said they would investigate whether there was abuse of power involved on the part of the police, or if there was any violation of standard operating procedures during the incident.
“Suhakam will meet with the Selangor Police Chief and investigating officers to get the details of the case,” he said.
Jerald said there are many unanswered questions.
“If it was true that the three of them were involved in a spate of break-ins, why were they not arrested? Did police fire any warning shots before shooting them?
“We will also investigate an allegation by a family member that a police sergeant had told the family that Moganambal was in their custody,” added Jerald.
On Saturday, Noor Azam was reported to have said three men suspected to be involved in robbery cases were killed in a shootout with the police, with two semi-automatic handguns, three machetes and three face masks recovered at the scene.
Earlier report: Sept 17, Family: What Really Happened in Rawang ‘Shootout’?