Shaariibuugiin Altantuyaa (sometimes also Altantuya Shaariibuu; 1978 – 2006), a Mongolian national, was a murder victim who was either murdered by C-4 explosives or was somehow killed first and her remains destroyed with C-4 in October 2006 in a deserted area in Shah Alam, Malaysia near Kuala Lumpur.
Altantuyaa was born in 1978. Her parents raised her and her sister while they worked in Russia where Altantuyaa started first grade elementary school. She was reportedly fluent in Mongolian, Russian, Chinese and English.
Altantuyaa moved back to Mongolia in 1990 and a few years later, married a Mongolian techno singer, Maadai. They had a child in 1996 but the marriage ended in divorce and the child went to live with Altantuyaa’s parents.
Despite training as a teacher, Altantuyaa briefly moved to France where she attended modeling school before returning to Mongolia. She only modeled part-time, for a brief time also opening a tour business in Mongolia.
Altantuyaa remarried and had another child in 2003 but the second marriage also ended in divorce (this is questionable). The second child also lives with Altantuyaa’s parents. Her mother said she never been a model.
She moved to Hong Kong in 2005, it was around this time she met Abdul Razak Baginda, a defense analyst from the Malaysian Strategic Research Centre think-tank, reportedly beginning a relationship with him. Initial reports of Altantuya having a child with Abdul Razak have been proven to be untrue.
Some sources allege that Altantuya came to Kuala Lumpur with a cousin in early October 2006 intending to confront Abdul Razak. When she went missing on Oct 19, her cousin lodged a police report and sought help from the Mongolian embassy in Bangkok.
Malaysian police found fragments of bone, later verified as hers, in forested land near the Subang Dam in Puncak Alam, Shah Alam. Police investigation of her remains revealed that she was shot twice before C-4 explosives were used on her remains, although there has been later suggestion that the C-4 explosives may have killed her. When her remains were found their identity could only be confirmed with DNA testing. The provenance of the C-4 remains unclear.
Abdul Razak and three members of the police force were arrested during the murder investigation. The two murder suspects have been named as Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri, 30 and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar, 35. They had been members of the elite Unit Tindakan Khas (the Malaysian Police Special Action Force or counter-terrorism unit) and were both assigned to the office of the Deputy Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, who was also the Defence Minister at the time of the murder. Abdul Razak has been charged with abetment in the murder.
Altantuya’s brutal murder received wide, detailed coverage in Malaysia, Mongolia and other Asian countries.
The trial was originally going to be held in March 2007, but was postponed until the 4th of June 2007. Due to controversial and last-minute changes in the prosecution and defence teams, and the presiding judge, the trial was again postponed until 18 June 2007. The pre-trial preparations have seen both the prosecution and defence teams level accusations of evidential impropriety at one another.
During the trial there was an incident between Baginda’s wife and the victim’s father.
In a statutory declaration in his sedition trial in October 2008, Raja Petra accused Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor (the wife of Malaysia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak) of being one of three individuals who were present at the crime scene when Altantuya Shaariibuu was murdered on Oct 19, 2006. He wrote that wrote that Najib’s wife, Rosmah Mansor, and Acting Colonel Aziz Buyong and his wife, Norhayati, Rosmah’s aide-de-camp, were present at the scene of the murder and that Aziz Buyong was the individual who placed C4 plastic explosive on Altantuya’s body and blew it up.