Wednesday, July 18, 2007

MORE PICS – Day 20 Altantuya Murder Trial; Sirul & Azilah Led Police - Crime Location; Defence Queries Discrepancies - Overlapping Dates in CCTV Tapes

The appearance of the date 11-11-06 on a tape handed out on 10-11-06 should be a normal occurrence in any CCTV recording using tapes as the recording is continuous. Tapes are NOT changed at midnight exactly daily so this overlapping of the tape sequence time is expected. Also when recycled tapes are used, these are not completely rewind to the end and impressions of old recordings are left behind when these are not completely erased.

The figure 00:23:25 appearing should signify a new day 23 min 25 sec after midnight. So what is the fuss over these discrepancies. In the case of CCTV recording using DVR (Digital Video Recorder) on a hard disc; the recordings for a particular day can be retrieved exactly without overlap.See below, a better coverage from the STAR on the tapes controversy

DAY 20 Trial -17 2007, Tuesday, Court Views CCTV footage with new Video Equipment
ABOVE & BELOW: Malaysikini Headlines at midday-17 Jul 07
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ABOVE & BELOW: Malaysiakini Evening Updates
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ABOVE & BELOW: The accused arriving in Court on Day 20 Trial

Defence pounces on discrepancies in tape recordings

R. Surenthira Kumar and Maria J. Dass; from SUN
DAY 20
SHAH ALAM (July 17, 2007): The defence in the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder trial today pounced on stark discrepancies which appeared during a prosecution witness's testimony on Hotel Malaya's closed-circuit television (CCTV) recordings.

ABOVE: Loo, leaving court at Day 20 of Trial after being cross-examined on the CTTV footages

Cross-examining the hotel's operations manager Loo Mow Chan, Hasnal Rezua Merican, who is defending murder accused Chief Insp Azilah Hadri, zeroed in on the three video tapes taken by the police from the 50-year-old hotel employee.

Loo had previously testified he handed over the three VHS videotapes to the police on Nov 10 last year and he only saw the tapes again some time in May this year when the police asked him to replay the tapes so they could take photographs. One of the three tapes was replayed in court yesterday morning, using equipment supplied by the police forensics department and this time, the images were clear.

Hasnal Rezua asked Loo whether he remembered the time the recording started.
Loo: I think it was 00:48 or 00:49 on Oct 18, 2006. Hasnal Rezua: At the beginning of the tape, the number 11-11-06 appears, correct?
Loo: Yes. Hasnal Rezua: Would that be a recording for Nov 11, 2006?
Loo: Yes.
Hasnal Rezua: But it was your testimony that the tapes and documents were handed to Sgt Amran (Ab Aziz) on Nov 10, 2006?
Loo: Yes.
Hasnal Rezua: This is very bizarre. You handed the tapes on the 10th, but the recording on 11th appears. I do not propose to ask a question on that.
Loo had previously testified that due to the incompatibility of the playback system with the tape, there was a discrepancy in the timing which appeared on the top of the screen of the monitor used in court.
Hasnal Rezua: Yesterday, when the figure 00:23:25 appeared on the screen, you offered an explanation that the system used in the court could not read the time. Agree that you were venturing a guess on how the figures appeared?
Loo: I wouldn't know.
Datuk Mohd Zaki: You do not know how that figure appears?
Loo: Yes, I do not know.
Hasnal Rezua: And when viewing the image of the 7th floor, the figure was 00:26:42. Given that you have no technical expertise, you were again venturing a guess that the system could not read the time?

Loo: I did not say, yesterday, that the system cannot read the time.
Mohd Zaki: The counsel is saying that you were guessing since you did not have the technical expertise.
Loo: I said that the system was incompatible
Hasnal Rezua: But it is your guess that the system was incompatible?
Loo: Then, I will agree.
Hasnal Rezua also questioned Loo's explanation that the discrepancy in the timing of recorded images could be due to incompability of the player.
He said Loo was not an expert to say this.
Hasnal Rezua also asked Loo if he had noted the details of the three tapes seized by police and whether he had viewed them before the police took them.
Loo said he did not.
To another question on the different dates appearing on the tapes during replay, he said it was because the tapes were re-used.
Earlier, Loo told the court the hotel's recording system had never broken down since the inception of the CCTV system in 2001.
He had earlier testified that the system had broken down, as a result of which the tapes could not be played back in the hotel for the court to view.
He told Hasnal Rezua, upon being questioned, that the system malfunctioned sometime in June.

The lawyer also pointed out that the accidental erasure tab on the three video tapes had been broken and that the tapes were capable of recording up to 180 minutes only.
Loo said the tape supplier had told him the tapes could record for 24 hours.

What happened today (Day 20)
* Hotel Malaya operations manager Loo Mow Chan was cross-examined by the defence. CCTV recordings were played back in court using new equipment and this time, the images were clear;
* After lunch, Loo was re-examined by the prosecution; and

* After Loo stood down, Supt Zainol Samah (ABOVE), Kuala Lumpur police contingent headquarters' special investigation unit head, was called. He was the one who gave the instruction to arrest Chief Insp Azilah Hadri. He will continue his testimony today.

= = == = = =from the STAR, a better report on the confusion of several dates on the tapes due to recycling.

Wednesday July 18, 2007
Recording stamped ‘Nov 11’ queried
SHAH ALAM: The presence of a recording, date stamped Nov 11 last year, of the closed-circuit television system in Hotel Malaya left many with a sense of curiosity. This was because the videotape (footages taken by the hotel's surveillance cameras from
12.48am on Oct 18 to 12.49am the next day) had been surrendered to the police on Nov 10. When this videotape was being shown in court yesterday, the first few seconds had a date stamp of Nov 11.
Asked by DPP Manoj Kurup to explain the anomalous situation, the hotel's operations manager Jimmy Loo Mow Chan said: “This is my personal opinion. It could be a technical fault with the timing.”
Loo, 50, earlier agreed to a suggestion by counsel Hasnal Rezua Merican, for Kpl Sirul Azhar Umar, that the recording dated Nov 11 would have been made on the same day (Nov 11 itself).
He agreed with Hasnal that it was a “bizarre” occurrence because the recording appeared in the tape one day after it had been handed over to the police to facilitate the investigations into the case.
Cross-examined on the same point by counsel Hazman Ahmad, for C/Insp Azilah Hadri, Loo agreed that although the tape was meant for Oct 18, it also contained recordings made on several other days such as Sept 19, last year as well as on Aug 18 and 19, last year.
He said the reason was because the tape had been recycled many times.

The same tape is used on the same date every month but not always started at the correct time, which is at midnight. That's why we tend to get leftovers from previous months,” he said.

The trial continues today
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July 17, 2007 21:22 PM
Azilah, Sirul Agreed To Bring Police To Crime Scene, Court Told

SHAH ALAM, July 17 (Bernama) -- C/Insp Azilah Hadri and Koperal Sirul Azhar Umar agreed to bring and show to the police the place where Mongolian part-time model Altantuya Shaariibuu was killed in Puncak Alam, Shah Alam on Nov 6 last year, the High Court here was told today. Supt Zainol Samah, 42, a special investigations officer attached to the Kuala Lumpur Police, said he was informed by ASP Tonny Lunggan on Nov 5 that the two accused had "confessed". Supt Zainol, the prosecution's 19th witness on Day 20 of the Altantuya murder trial, said he then contacted Supt Amidon Adnan of the forensics department to arrange a team to be ready at the UITM building in Shah Alam. He said he then left his office and followed Tony's car to Shah Alam in his.

Zainol told the court that in Tony's car were Sirul Azhar, DSP Gan Tack Guan and other police officers, names of whom he could not remember. During examination-in-chief by Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Tun Abdul Majid Tun Hamzah, Zainol said he left from the Kuala Lumpur police headquarters at 5.30 pm on Nov 5, 2006.

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ABOVE & BELOW: New Equipment used to playback the tapes on Day 20 of Trial

July 17, 2007 19:12 PM

Defence Disputes CCTV Recording In Altantuya Murder Case
SHAH ALAM, July 17 (Bernama) -- The defence in the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder trial in the High Court here today questioned the authenticity of the Hotel Malaya closed-circuit television (CCTV) recording of the images of two men, believed to be the accused. Hasnal Redzua Merican, counsel for the second accused, Cpl Sirul Azhar Umar, said it was bizarre that the video tape with the recording also contained images captured on Nov 11 last year, when the 17th prosecution witness, Jimmy Loo Mow Chan, had testified earlier that he handed over the video tape to a police officer the day before, that is Nov 10 2006. However, in the afternoon session, Loo, 50, Hotel Malaya's operations manager, explained under re-examination by deputy public prosecutor Manoj Kurup that the discrepancy was due to a technical fault.
Manoj: You notice that at the beginning of the tape it is printed 11-11-06 at time 17:04. Can you explain why that recording is on the tape if it had been handed to the police on the Nov 10 2006?
Loo: My opinion it that it could be a technical fault as to the timer.
Manoj: Timer or date?
Loo: As far as I know, it is the same.
Earlier, Loo admitted that he did not have the technical expertise to explain why there was a discrepancy in the CCTV recording.
Sirul Azhar, 35, and the other accused, Chief Insp Azilah Hadri, 30, are charged with murdering Altantuya, 28, at a location between Lots 12843 and 16735, Mukim Bukit Raja, between 10pm on Oct 19 last year and 1am the following day.
Political analyst Abdul Razak Abdullah Baginda, 47, is accused of abetting them.
Yesterday, Loo testified that there was a discrepancy in the time displayed on some of the images as the audio visual equipment used to play the tape in court was not compatible.
However, today he agreed that he was guessing when he said that.

= = = =Watch the Video Clip (1 min 25 sec) - Day 20 Trial

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