He made his reassessment after 40 minutes of questioning, after having earlier defended the two pathologists who conducted the first post-mortem.
Shahidan (left) said that in any death-in-custody case, two procedures have to be observed:
1) Examination for evidence of pressure imposed on the neck, such as signs of strangulation
2) Dissection of limbs and certain muscles would need to be carried out to ascertain whether there were beatings
He agreed with Gobind Singh Deo,the counsel for Teoh's family, that if such procedures were not observed in post-mortems into custodial deaths, it could suggest a possible cover-up.
Shahidan confirmed he had been briefed about Teoh's case. He determined there are three likely causes of death, either:
- Teoh had died in custody; or
- he was thrown out of the window or
- he had jumped out of the window.
In this case, Shahidan said limb dissections were not done during the first post-mortem. However, he performed this during the second post-mortem.
"I also discovered some superficial marks on Teoh's neck," he said.
This finding was missing in the first post-mortem report, but Thai pathologist Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand (right) spotted it.
Pathologists carrying out the first post-mortem did not do the dissection of the limbs and muscles as efforts were concentrated on the neck, chest and abdomen.
The Sungai Buloh pathologist was at a loss for words when Gobind pointed out the two pathologists who performed the first post-mortem did not spot the superficial bruise marks on the neck while Pornthip was able to do from a photo taken during the first post-mortem.
Gobind said that, if it were not for Pornthip, the marks would not have been noted.
Throughout the session, Shahidan defended the two pathologists. He described the first post-mortem report as the best possible, but later agreed that proper protocol had not been followed when it was performed.
He spent almost 40 minutes defending the first post-mortem findings but in the end agreed that his second post-mortem was more detailed.
Shahidan, during the last hearing, had listed Teoh's cause of death as due to a fall from a high place.