National diving coach freed of rape charge

KUALA LUMPUR: National diving squad coach Huang Qiang was acquitted and discharged by the sessions court today on a charge of raping a national diver without calling for his defence.

Judge Noradura Hamzah ordered Huang, 36 from China, to be released after finding that the prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie in the case.

"The court finds most of the testimony by the victim is merely presumptuous and when compared with the testimony of other witnesses, namely the victim's cousin and investigation officer, there were material contradictions.

"The failure by the prosecution to call other material witnesses and independent witnesses, namely workers at the time of the incident shows weaknesses in he prosecution's case."

She said the prosecution also failed to prove that the alleged action by the accused was made without the victim's consent.

"There was no evidence by the victim on the issue of consent as mentioned during the trial. The issue of the victim not putting up a struggle because of fear cannot be accepted because the victim herself is strong and fit and capable of fighting to avoid the incident."

Quang was charged with raping the national diver, then aged 20, at the National Aquatic Centre in Bukit Jalil at 5.30pm on Sept 26 last year.

The man, who has obtained Malaysian citizenship, was charged under Section 376(1) of the Penal Code, which provides an imprisonment for up to 20 years and whipping.

The prosecution was conducted by deputy public prosecutor Hafizza Sauni, while lawyer Mohd Hisham Md Nen represented Quang.

A total of 15 prosecution witnesses testified during the hearing of the case which began on Jan 19. – Bernama