WELLINGTON, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) — A Malaysian diplomat who sparked an international incident when he attacked a woman in her Wellington home was sentenced in a New Zealand court Thursday.
Muhammad Rizalman, 39, who was Malaysian defense attache in Wellington when the attack occurred in May 2014, admitted a charge of indecent assault in the High Court in Wellington in December last year.
Rizalman would serve a sentence of nine months in home detention in New Zealand, Radio New Zealand reported.
It reported the judge said Rizalman had terrified his victim and had shown a startling lack of remorse.
Rizalman's lawyer said his client was in an altered mental state at the time of the incident, caused by work stress, possible depression and potential use of drugs.
The case became an international incident after Rizalman was allowed to claim diplomatic immunity and return home in the wake of the offense.
The revelations and ensuing scandal forced the New Zealand government to make an embarrassing request for Rizalman's extradition, which occurred in October 2014.
Foreign Minister Murray McCully launched the ministerial inquiry in June 2014 after revelations that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade had mistakenly given Malaysian diplomats the impression that New Zealand officials would not object to Rizalman claiming immunity and returning home.