KOTA KINABALU: The Court of Appeal here yesterday affirmed the death sentence of a Filipino for murdering a local taxi driver in Beaufort three years ago.
The Appellate Court panel chaired by Justice Dato’ Hj Mohd Zawawi Salleh, together with Justices Vernon Ong Lam Kiat and Datuk Dr Prasad Sandosham Abraham made the unanimous decision to dismiss the appeal by on Joy Felix, 24, against his conviction and sentence.
They held that the High Court judge had not made any error in his judgement.
On May 26, 2014, Joy was found guilty of murdering a 42-year-old man at Kampung Padas valley in Beaufort at 10am on March 14, 2012.
The appellant was convicted under Section 302 of the Penal Code which carries the mandatory death sentence upon conviction.
Earlier, counsel Nelson, who represented Joy, said that the appellant had no intention of killing the deceased as he had thrown away the knife which he held and punched the victim instead.
He also said that the trial judge had erred in his ruling on the intent and failed to consider the evidence on the state of mind of the appellant. Nelson explained that the appellant had panicked the moment he realised that the deceased had died, and that his face had turned pale.
Furthermore, he contended that in the appellant’s mind, he had not intended to strangle the victim to death, but had initially planned to release the deceased after robbing him.
In reply, deputy public prosecutor (DPP) Hamdan Hamzah stated that there was intention to cause death as the appellant knew very well that exerting strong pressure around the neck of the victim could cause death.
In a separate case, the same court dismissed an appeal by a maintenance worker against his conviction and sentence for murdering a man three years ago.
The judges unanimously affirmed the decision meted on Mohamad Ahmad, 30, after hearing submissions from both parties.
On June 10, 2013, Mohamad was convicted under Section 302 of the Penal Code for killing a 27-year-old man at a billiard shop in Menggatal New Township on January 5, 2012.
DPP Hamzah prosecuted while Mohamad was defended by counsel Hamid Ismail.