The mother of Dutch model, Ivana Esther Robert Smit, whose naked body was discovered on the balcony of a condominium building in Kuala Lumpur 5 years ago, has filed a lawsuit against the Home Minister, the Malaysian government, the Inspector-General of Police, and the Dang Wangi investigating officer ASP Faizal Abdullah.
The suit was lodged on the grounds of alleged statutory duty violations and negligence in the inquiry to ascertain the cause of her daughter’s death.
It was reported that the Malaysian High Court had rejected the police and the government’s request to have it dismissed. When delivering the court’s ruling, Judicial commissioner, Roz Mawar Rozain stated that the case was ineligible for dismissal since there were important issues that would require a thorough hearing.
“This is not a case that should be dismissed without a second thought. The defendants’ assertion that they are immune from prosecution under the Police Act of 1967 is also a significant legal issue that needs to be tried, according to the witness,” she said.
In this case, according to Roz Mawar, it cannot be conclusively determined that the plaintiff’s claim was unsustainable.
“This court determines that there is a legitimate cause of action against the defendants after carefully reviewing the pleading. The plaintiff’s lawsuit is not obscene, pointless, or a misuse of the legal system. As a result, the court denies the motion and dismisses the application with cost of RM5,000,” she said.
The court fixed Dec 14 for case management.
The lawsuit was filed by Christina Carolina Gerarda Johanna Verstappen on November 20, 2020.
Verstappen’s lawsuit was dismissed by the High Court on April 21, 2021 because the statement of claim didn’t adhere to Order 18, Rule 7 of the Rules of Court 2012; nonetheless, the Court of Appeal upheld the dismissal following an appeal.
She stated in the lawsuit that on December 7 2017, the dead body of her 18-year-old daughter was found nude on the 6th floor of CapSquare Residence, after falling from the 20th floor of a condo unit owned by American couple, Alex Johnson and Luna Almazkyzy.
CCTV footage showed Ivana being carried into a lift a few hours preceding her death.
She argued that the failure of the police to secure the crime scene, properly investigate Johnson and Almazkyzy, detain, extradite, and secure the pair’s attendance at the inquest as key witnesses constituted negligence on their part.
The Coroner’s Court determined on March 18, 2019, that Ivana’s death was spurred by a “misadventure.”
Verstappen appealed the coroner’s decision to the Kuala Lumpur High Court as she was dissatisfied with it. On November 22, 2019, High Court Judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah overturned the coroner’s decision and substituted “Death by person or persons unknown” as the new conclusion.
He also ordered the Attorney-General to instruct the Royal Malaysia Police to conduct additional investigations.