SHAH ALAM: An Indonesian woman charged with the killing of the North Korean leader’s half-brother was paid by a suspected Pyongyang agent to take part in multiple “pranks” just weeks before the murder, a court heard Friday, reports AFP.
Siti Aisyah and Vietnamese woman Doan Thi Huong are on trial for the Cold War-style assassination of Kim Jong-Nam at Kuala Lumpur airport on February 13 last year while he was waiting for a flight to Macau.Defence lawyers have argued that the women were recruited to take part in what they thought were prank TV shows but were instead tricked into becoming inadvertent assassins, in an elaborate plot by a group of North Korean agents.
“The significance of today’s evidence is we are telling the court how this girl was tricked into doing pranks and persuaded to go to the airport on February 13,” defence lawyer Gooi Soon Seng told reporters after presenting witnesses and text messages at the hearing.
The pair allegedly smeared Kim’s face with the banned nerve agent VX, killing him within minutes. The women were arrested days later.
Kim was the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un. He had been living in exile since a family fallout.
At the resumption of the trial Friday, investigating officer Wan Azirul Nizam said Siti had told police she was offered money by Ri Ji U, a North Korean posing as a Japanese man named “James”, to carry out several pranks.
News reports have described Ri as the youngest of eight North Korean men previously wanted by the Malaysian police for suspected involvement in the killing.