Man accused of dumping Felicia Teo's corpse in Punggol expected to plead guilty next month

Ahmad Danial Mohamed Rafa'ee, initially accused of killing Ms Felicia Teo, is expected to plead guilty to four other charges. PHOTOS: KELVIN CHNG, ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A man who was initially accused of killing Ms Felicia Teo, 19, in 2007 before being given a discharge not amounting to an acquittal for the murder charge in June this year is expected to plead guilty to other charges in a district court on Oct 14.

Those granted such a discharge can still be prosecuted for the related crime if relevant information or evidence were to emerge later.

According to court documents The Straits Times received on Monday, Ahmad Danial Mohamed Rafa'ee, now 37, is expected to plead guilty to four charges: unlawfully depositing Ms Teo's corpse in a public place, dishonestly misappropriating her belongings, giving false evidence to two police officers, and fabricating false evidence.

He is accused of committing these offences with Mr Ragil Putra Setia Sukmarahjana, then 18, an Indonesian man who has not been charged in a Singapore district court.

Court documents did not disclose how Ms Teo died and who was responsible for her death.

The two men are accused of depositing her corpse around Punggol Track 24 on or around June 30, 2007.

At around the same time, they allegedly misappropriated some of her belongings, such as her mobile phone.

On June 30, 2007, they are said to have fabricated evidence by placing her mobile phone around East Coast Park to support alleged false information to the police that Ms Teo had gone there.

Ahmad and Mr Ragil are accused of giving false information to two police officers at Tanglin Police Division on July 11 and 25 that year.

Ms Teo had earlier left her home in Bras Basah on June 29, 2007 and this was the last time her parents saw her.

Later, closed-circuit television footage captured her entering a lift in a Marine Terrace housing block with two men.

Ahmad and Mr Ragil are believed to have been the last to see her alive. The three are said to have been friends who had studied at Lasalle College of the Arts.

Closed-circuit television footage showed Ms Felicia Teo entering a lift in Block 19 Marine Terrace with two men. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM GOOGLE MAPS

Ms Teo's mother lodged a missing persons police report on July 3, 2007.

Police then began investigating and had earlier classified it as a missing persons case as they did not find any facts linking the two men to her disappearance.

Following a review, the case was referred to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in July 2020.

A breakthrough came after the CID uncovered new leads while tracing the belongings that were believed to be in Ms Teo's possession when she was reported missing. The CID managed to link one of her belongings to Ahmad, who was arrested on Dec 15, 2020 and charged with her murder two days later.

He was then accused of working together with Mr Ragil to murder Ms Teo.

On June 27 this year, Ahmad was given a discharge not amounting to an acquittal for the murder charge as Mr Ragil was still at large.

The prosecution had earlier told the court: "Authorities have made and continue to make reasonable efforts to trace the co-accused. The Indonesian authorities have been informed and they are in the process of tracing (him).

"This is not a case where police have been trying for many years to trace the co-accused. The tracing of him only began after the accused was arrested... and new facts came to light during the investigations."

There is also no evidence that Mr Ragil is dead, the court heard.

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However, defence lawyer Shashi Nathan had earlier said Ahmad should be granted a discharge amounting to an acquittal. This would mean he can never be prosecuted for Ms Teo's murder.

Mr Nathan had argued that Ahmad and his family suffered after he was charged and the continuing investigations would cause harm to them.

In written grounds published last month, District Judge Eugene Teo explained why he had, in June, rejected arguments for Ahmad to be given such a discharge for the murder charge.

Among other things, the judge had said the points raised by Ahmad's lawyers did not come close to "displacing the larger and solemn public interest in ensuring that all those who may be responsible for Ms Felicia Teo's death are held to account for their actions".

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