Retired Malaysian police officer claims he was asked to subvert Anwar's sodomy trial

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The chairman of the Malaysian Crime Watch Task Force (MyWatch), Mr R. Sri Sanjeevan, has denied claims by a retired investigating officer that there was an attempt to subvert Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim's second sodomy trial, calling the allegation a "complete lie".

In a statement released on Saturday, Mr Sanjeevan refuted allegations by Mr Jude Pereira, the retired investigating officer in the case, that the former had asked him to subvert the trial on behalf of the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) leader.

Mr Pereira claimed in an interview with online portal Malaysia Today on Friday that he had received a call from Mr Sanjeevan about a week before the 2013 General Election, asking to meet.

When they met at the Hilton Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Mr Sanjeevan allegedly tried to persuade Mr Pereira to release a press statement claiming that there was a conspiracy and government interference in Mr Pereira's investigations.

However, Mr Pereira was said to have refused to release the statement as his investigations showed no conspiracy or governmental interference. Mr Pereira had also claimed to have spoken to Anwar via telephone regarding the issue.

"He (Sanjeevan) then gave the phone to me, requesting that I talk to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. I just wished him well for the elections and told him that I was not able to say what Sanjeevan had wanted me to say, but that I would just mention that I respected the court's decision in his case. Anwar replied that it was all right and good enough for me to say just that," the portal quoted Mr Pereira as saying.

Mr Pereira claimed that Mr Sanjeevan had given him a press statement via two unnamed individuals later that day at a hotel in KL Sentral to look over. The portal reported Mr Sanjeevan promising that Mr Pereira would be "taken care of should PKR win (the general election)" if the latter agreed to release the statement.

"I was completely shocked after reading a passage of about 100 words, which said that I was the investigation officer and that Anwar was innocent and was charged unreasonably, with evidence fabricated against him. The passage made me look like a fool and would have thrown my integrity down the drain after all my hard work. I refused to subscribe to their request and just walked away from the hotel."

The article also claimed that former Inspector-General of Police Musa Hassan was aware of the meeting between Mr Pereira and Mr Sanjeevan. It also reported that Tan Sri Musa had met Mr Pereira before the meeting with Mr Sanjeevan, and had asked Mr Pereira if there was a conspiracy in the case against the opposition leader. Mr Musa had further informed Mr Pereira about Mr Sanjeevan's close ties with Anwar.

The article further claimed that Anwar had attempted to "be friends" with Mr Musa, who is also the former patron of MyWatch.

"Later on that same day, Musa texted me and asked me how my meeting (with Sanjeevan) went. When I told him what had happened, he texted me in reply saying that I did the right thing in safeguarding my integrity," Mr Pereira said.

In his statement, Mr Sanjeevan admitted to meeting Mr Pereira shortly before the election, but only to confirm if there was any kind of conspiracy in Anwar's case.

"The meeting was arranged by Musa Hassan, whom at the time I was working very closely with as he was the patron of MyWatch.

"The meeting was to confirm from Jude Pereira himself whether there was a conspiracy in Anwar's case.

"However, unfortunately, since Jude was not willing to go on record, it ended there. I never met nor contacted Jude since then," Mr Sanjeevan clarified.

He also said that the meeting with Mr Pereira was his own attempt to expose the truth of the case, claiming that Anwar had "nothing to with this".

"I should have known better than to trust these two individuals," he added, referring to Mr Musa and Mr Pereira.

Mr Sanjeevan also posted a tweet earlier on Friday rubbishing Mr Pereira's claims.

"Jude Pereira was found as not a credible witness by TS Shafee Abdullah himself so obviously I'm NOT going to comment on his allegations," he wrote.

Mr Pereira was the investigating officer in Anwar's sodomy case.

He filed his petition for admission to be a lawyer on July 23, 2012, however, it was dismissed on Jan 15, 2014.