Malaysia's Federal Court. Photo: Google Maps
Malaysia's Federal Court. Photo: Google Maps

Malaysia’s Federal Court has upheld death sentences given to nine Filipino men who took part in a bloody raid in Sabah in 2013 – to “reclaim” land for a proclaimed sultanate in the southern Philippines.

The nine men were charged with waging war against the Yan di-Pertuan Agong, the Malaysian King, The Straits Times reported.

In February 2013, about 200 Filipino militants invaded Lahad Datu in Sabah and said they were reclaiming the land for Jamalul Kiram III, the self-proclaimed sultan of Sulu in the south of the Philippines.

The Malaysian Army fought the militants after they refused to leave. More than 70 people killed before the incursion ended in April 2013.

The nine men were captured and sentenced to life in prison by a lower court in 2016. In June last year, the Court of Appeals overturned the ruling and sentenced them to death, The Straits Times reported last year.

Chief Justice Raus Sharif said the decision of the five Federal Court judges was unanimous and that the death sentence “most appropriate” based on the facts of the case.