In a shocking development, Samirah Muzzafar, wife of Cradle CEO Nazrin Hassan, who was found dead in his bedroom at his Kuala Lumpur house in June last year, along with her two teenage sons from previous marriage, was formally charged with his murder, as per various reports.
Another woman from Indonesia, who is said to be the couple’s maid, has also been charged with the murder.
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All the accused — except the maid who is currently absconding — were arrested in the early hours of Monday and produced before the magistrates court outside of the capital city.
The charge under Section 302 of the Penal Code of Malaysia carries the mandatory death sentence upon conviction, says a Straits Times report.
The magistrate ordered the case to be transferred to the High Court. The court has also issued a gag order on the media not to disclose the names of the minors.
Hassan, the CEO of state-run Cradle Fund, passed away on June 14 after fire caught his bedroom at his two-storey house in Mutiara Damansara. The cause of fire was initially thought to be an accident, when his mobile phone exploded during charging.
Almost a month later, the police reclassified the case as possible murder. Following this, Muzzafar issued a press statement accusing the authorities of keeping her and her family in the dark about the investigation. She had also pointed out disparities between media reports on the death and official statements from the fire and rescue department and the police.
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A few days later, Muzaffar and her ex-husband were arrested in connection with the case.
Muzaffar (44) is a senior executive at the Malaysian Intellectual Property Corporation (MyIPO).
Hassan was the CEO for Cradle Group from 2007. With him at the helm, the agency, which operates under the Ministry of Finance, became a champion of early-stage startups. He led efforts to set-up 1-for-1 investment schemes and helped Malaysian startup success stories like Piktochart and ChristineNg.com get off the ground.