Bella case: Watching brief lawyers call on cops to probe sexual grooming allegations

·2-min read
Malay Mail
Malay Mail

JOHOR BARU, July 21 — Lawyers keeping a watching brief in the trial of Rumah Bonda welfare home founder Siti Bainun Ahd Razali at the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court called on the authorities to investigate claims of alleged sexual grooming that surfaced in court.

Datuk Khairul Anwar Rahmat, who is representing the group of four lawyers, said the alleged sexual grooming involved the 13-year-old girl with Down’s Syndrome called Bella whom Siti Bainun is accused of abusing while under her care.

“Based on the latest proceeding notes, the court was told of the ‘existence’ of a man accused of committing the immoral acts against Bella, a helpless teenage girl.

“The team of lawyers observing Bella’s case want the authorities to initiate an investigation into the alleged sexual grooming crime against the victim,” said Khairul Anwar without elaborating further.

He said this to Malay Mail from a prepared text following the latest updates on Bella in the ongoing Siti Bainun case.

He explained that the watching brief lawyers are of the view that this latest revelation is a serious criminal act as it had never been raised by any party before.

“The watching brief lawyers have also discussed it with the prosecution and the defence.

“We also called for a police report to be lodged to identify the ‘mystery man’ and drag him to court,” he said.

Khairul Anwar said the disclosure must be addressed immediately by the authorities and stakeholders involved.

He said this was to ensure the safety of both Bella and her friends who are currently in shelters across the country.

On April 20, the four senior lawyers, appointed by Johor Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim, were allowed by the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court to keep a watching brief in the trial of Rumah Bonda welfare home founder Siti Bainun.

The four lawyers are Datuk Baljit Singh Sidhu, Datuk Khairul Anwar Rahmat, Datuk Ikbal Salam and Mohd Radzi Yatiman.

Siti Bainun, 30, faces two charges of neglecting and abusing Bella, causing her to suffer physical and emotional injuries.

She is accused of committing the act at a condominium in Wangsa Maju, here, between February and June 2021, under Section 31 (1) (a) of the Children Act 2001, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years’ imprisonment or a fine of RM50,000 or both, if convicted.

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