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Appeals Court upholds sentence on ex-militant's son

PUTRAJAYA, Feb 3 (Bernama) -- The son of a former Islamic State (IS) militant lost his appeal today to reduce his 12 years jail term for involvement in a criminal conspiracy to promote terrorism in Malaysia.

A Court of Appeal three-man bench led by Justice Datuk Wira Mohtarudin Baki unanimously dismissed Abu Daud Murad Halimmuddin's appeal after ruling that it did not have any merit.

Abu Daud, 27, the eldest son of Murad Halimmuddin Hassan had pleaded guilty at the Kuala Lumpur High Court in June 2015 to committing the offence at No 61, Pengkalan Batu Hampar, Air Putih, Pendang district, Kedah on March 25, 2015.

His father Murad, 50, also pleaded guilty to two charges -- involvement in a criminal conspiracy to promote terrorism in Malaysia and supporting terrorist activities, and was sentenced to 18 years imprisonment.

The High Court ordered Murad and Abu Daud to serve their respective jail terms from their date of arrest on April 5, 2015.

Two other judges in the court of appeal panel were Datuk Harmindar Singh Dhaliwal and Datuk Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil.

Earlier, lawyer M. Hafiz Zainol Abidin who was representing the father and son, withdrew Murad's appeal after informing the court that the latter had passed away.

It was reported that Murad died of a heart complication on Oct 21, last year at Teluk Intan Hospital in Perak where he was admitted to the intensive care unit after his condition deteriorated.

In his submission for a reduced sentence for Abu Daud, Hafiz said the appellant had never gone to Syria or participated in military activities.

However, deputy public prosecutor Tetralina Ahmed Fauzi argued that the appellate court should not reduce the jail term because the offence committed by Abu Daud was a serious one.

DPP pointed out that Abu Daud had incited terrorism acts by planning to create chaos in the country, planning to kidnap some of the country's leaders and to raid army camps for weapons.

The facts of the case revealed that Murad Halimmuddin went to Syria in August 2014 and initially joined the Ajnad Al Syam militant group before joining IS.

He returned to Malaysia through Thailand via Bukit Kayu Hitam.

During a meeting in Pendang on Jan 30, 2015, Murad Halimmuddin, his son and a few other individuals pledged to recruit at least 20 people to launch jihad in Malaysia.

Abu Daud had also suggested at the meeting that they kidnap a few of the country's leaders in exchange for certain individuals detained under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act (SOSMA).

Murad and Abu Daud were among six individuals who were charged for the offences. The duo changed their plea while the other four claimed trial.


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