KUALA LUMPUR: The accused in the murder of Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia (UPNM) cadet marine officer Zulfarhan Osman Zulkarnain will continue with their defence at the High Court here this April 16.

Deputy public prosecutor Julia Ibrahim told Bernama that the defence trial before judge Datuk Azman Abdullah was supposed to continue tomorrow and on April 13.

However, due to the enforcement of the Movement Control Order (MCO), new dates have been fixed for the hearing which will be on April 16 and April 21 to 23, she said through a Whatsapp message.

On July 31 last year, the High Court ordered 18 UPNM students to enter their defence on charges of murdering, injuring and abetting the murder of Zulfarhan.

Five of them, Muhammad Akmal Zuhairi, Muhammad Azamuddin Mad Sofi, Muhammad Najib Mohd Razi, Muhammad Afif Najmudin and Mohamad Shobirin Sabri are charged with murder, while Abdoul Hakeem Mohd Ali is charged with abetting the murder of Zulfarhan.

They allegedly committed the offence at room 04 -10, of the Jebat hostel building in UPNM, between 4.45am and 5.45am on May 22, 2017.

The charges against the accused were made under Section 302 and 109 of the Penal Code, which carry the mandatory death sentence upon conviction.

The six, along with 12 others, were also ordered to enter their defence on charges of injuring the victim.

The 12 are Mohd Hafiz Fauzan Ismail, Mohamad Lukhmanul Hakim Mohd Zain, Ahmad Shafwan Berdal, Muhammad Amirul Asraff Mala, Luqman Hakim Shamsuri, Muhammad Sufi Mohd Mustapha, Noriznan Izzairi Noor Azhar, Muhamad Ashraf Abdullah, Muhammad Danial Firdaus Azmir, Muhammad Hasif Ismail, Muhammad Adib Iman Fuad Adi Sany and Mohamad Syazwan Musa.

They are charged with voluntarily causing hurt against the victim for the purpose of forcing the latter to admit to the alleged theft of a laptop, according to Section 330 of the Penal Code, read together with Section 34 of the same Act, which imposes a maximum imprisonment of seven years, and a fine, upon conviction.

The offence was allegedly committed at room 03-05, of the Jebat hostel building in UPNM, between 2.30am and 5.30am on May 21, 2017. — Bernama