Murder by poison proved by prosecutors

January 19, 2022 4:33 pm

Mohammed Isoof

The Lautoka High Court today convicted Mohammed Isoof after 18 days of hearing witnesses and evidence provided by both sides.

Isoof’s judgment was handed down by Judge Justice Thushara Rajasinghe and the New Zealand resident was found guilty of five counts of murder and a count of attempted murder.

In August 2019, Isoof murdered three adults and two children and attempted to murder an 11-month old by abandoning her at Nausori Highlands, Nadi.

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In a packed courtroom that had family members of the deceased and other interested parties, the Judge said the prosecution had been able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that it was a crime of murder by poison.

Earlier in his judgment, it was also stated that there was no direct evidence to establish or point out what the accused had done at Nausori Highlands to cause the death of the family and also no direct evidence of how and who administered the poison.

The Nausori Highlands, Nadi

There was also no direct evidence to establish the identity of the pesticide found in the bodies of the family.

However, the Judge said the prosecution’s case entirely depended on the circumstantial evidence.

The prosecution was also able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the accused had gone to Goundar’s Hardware store and enquired about a chemical mainly named “Lannate.”

They were also able to prove that Isoof was the last person seen with the family at the remote location where their bodies were found later.

The judge said that Isoof did not deny taking the family up to the Nausori Highlands.

The prosecutors were also able to prove that Isoof performed a ritual at Nausori Highlands with the family.

The trial judge said the prosecution was able to successfully prove beyond reasonable doubt that Isoof committed the offences.

While his 36 page long judgment was being read out in court, Isoof could be seen repeatedly shaking his head and at times staring intensely at the judge.

The defence will file their mitigation submission while the state will file their sentencing submission.

Both parties have until tomorrow afternoon to file their submissions.

Isoof will be sentenced on Friday at 11.30am.