Police tortured me, claims Bersih participant

G Vinod | May 15, 2012
A technician alleges he was detained overnight and beaten up after he voluntarily went to the police station to give his statement about his participation in the rally.
 
PETALING JAYA: A participant in the Bersih 3.0 rally who voluntarily went to a police station yesterday alleged he was detained overnight and tortured when he went in to give a statement.
Mohd Safuan Mamat, 24, lodged a report at the Petaling Jaya district police headquarters at 6pm today, accompanied by Lawyers for Liberty coordinators Fadiah Nadwa Fikri and Afiz M Noor.
Also present were Bersih steering committee members Maria Chin Abdullah and Mandeep Singh.
Earlier at 3pm, Safuan was brought to a Sessions Court in Kuala Lumpur to face two charges.
In the police report, Safuan said that he went on his accord to the Dang Wangi police station yesterday morning, to give a statement on his participation in the Bersih 3.0 rally held on April 28.
Safuan, who works as a technician, claimed that after recording his statement, a plainclothes officer took him to a lock-up behind the station and threatened to detain him if he did not “confess”.
“I was later handcuffed and put [overnight] in a lock-up. Later, another officer, who was in full uniform, came into my cell holding a black metal pipe,” said Safuan.
The technician from Terengganu said the officer asked him whether he was Bersih participant and kicked him on the buttocks till he fell down.
Safuan claimed the officer also forced him to admit that he had damaged a police car during the rally.
“When I denied the accusation, the officer struck my face with the metal pipe. He also hit me on my shoulder when I refused to confess,” he said.

‘I was completely stunned’
Safuan added that after the assault, he was made to change his shirt and was taken to some prisoners who also assaulted him.
“The officer told the prisoners that I was a Bersih participant and one of them slapped me four times. The officer did nothing to stop him,” he alleged.
He said he did not get the name of the officer who assaulted him.
“I was too frightened at the time. I was completely stunned and I couldn’t remember his name,” he said.
Safuan also claimed that while he was taken to the Sessions Court, some officers told him to confess that he had damaged the police car.
Safuan was charged with causing mischief during the disturbances and for not obeying an order of a public servant under Sections 440 and 174 of the Penal Code.
For the first charge, he can be jailed for five years and fined, or both, and for the second charge, he faces a one-month imprisonment and a fine or both.
He was released today after posting a RM1,500 bail.
His court hearing is fixed for June 6.
Meanwhile, Fadiah accused the police of using scare tactics to hunt down Bersih participants.
“The police should have released Safuan after recording his statement and charge him on another day. Instead, they used harsh tactics on him to get a confession,” she said.

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