Malaysian diplomat's psychiatric evaluation complete

Last updated 19:27, August 26 2014
EVALUATION COMPLETE: Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail
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EVALUATION COMPLETE: Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail

A psychiatric evaluation of a Malaysian diplomat accused of sexually assaulting a Wellington woman is reportedly complete.

The Malaysian Government has previously said it is "making arrangements" to send Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail back to New Zealand to face trial.

Malaysian news website Malaysiakini is reporting that Armed Forces chief Gen Zulkifeli Mohd Zin has announced a psychiatric evaluation of Rizalman has been completed. 

"As to when are we sending him [to New Zealand], that depends on Wisma Putra and the Attorney-General's Chambers, and the two countries [Malaysia and New Zealand]," he told Malaysiakini.

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Former Malaysian Embassy envoy Rizalman was arrested on May 10 in Wellington after an alleged attack on Tania Billingsley, 22, in Brooklyn.

Wellington police charged him with assault with intent to rape and burglary.

He left New Zealand on May 22 after Malaysia refused to waive his right to invoke diplomatic immunity. Malaysia later announced it would begin the process to return him to New Zealand to stand trial. However while it was initially said he could face a military court at home it was reported that he he might be well enough to travel.

Questions were then raised over the handling of the case by Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade officials which has launched an inquiry to determine whether the NZ side gave an impression of ambiguity in talks with Malaysia on whether it required Rizalman to stay in the country.

Billingsley waived her right to name suppression and publicly demanded an apology from Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully.

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