POTA violating laws, rights in terrorism fight

April 12, 2015

POTA violating laws, rights in terrorism fight


COMMENT: The Malaysian Bar, the Sabah Law Association, and the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak vehemently oppose all forms of detention without trial, and view the passage into law of the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2015 (“Pota”) in the early hours of 7 April 2015 with grave concern.

POTA is clearly an attempt by the government to resurrect the Internal Security Act 1960 (“ISA”), Restricted Residence Act 1933, Banishment Act 1959, and Emergency (Public Order and Prevention of Crime) Ordinance 1969.

POTA is objectionable, ignores due process, infringes upon our constitutional rights, and is repugnant to the rule of law.

POTA brings about the re-emergence of detention without trial laws, the limiting or denial of legal representation, and the ouster of the jurisdiction of the courts.

Ill-defined targets

POTA is unclear in its scope inasmuch as it is directed at an ill-defined group of persons. It is purportedly directed at persons who are “engaged in the commission or support of terrorist acts involving listed terrorist organisations in a foreign country or any part of a foreign country”.

However, words like “engaged”, “commission”, “support” and “involving” have not been defined in POTA.  Thus, the reach of the legislation is extremely wide and lends itself to abuse.

It opens up the real possibility that almost anyone could be targeted under POTA. It cannot be conveniently seen as simply targeting “terrorists”.

We have seen how the ISA, which had been meant to deal with the communist insurgency, was used to stifle political dissent and imprison political opponents. POTA gives false hope in the exclusion of “political belief and political activity” as a ground for detention.

Organisations not registered as political parties under the Societies Act 1966, or not registered under the Societies Act 1966 at all, may be subjected to the wide powers of POTA.

We also note that in the past, politicians and political activists had been detained under the ISA for activities that were nonetheless viewed as prejudicial to national security or public order.

We fear POTA will be similarly abused as a tool for political oppression.

Executive taking over judicial powers

The Malaysian Bar, the Sabah Law Association and the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak are also very troubled by the encroachment into judicial discretion in criminal matters.

POTA, a person can initially be remanded for investigative detention for a maximum of 60 days. A magistrate has no discretion to refuse a request for remand, and is reduced to rubber-stamping requests by the police and Public Prosecutor.

Likewise, a Sessions Court Judge has no discretion to refuse any application by the public prosecutor to order that an accused person be attached with an electronic monitoring device.  Discretionary powers that exist to enable the judiciary to confront the excesses of the executive are now effectively extinguished.

The intrusion on judicial discretion permitted by Pota is serious, as it is tantamount to vesting judicial power in the executive.  We remind the government that under our constitutional scheme, judicial power is vested in the Judiciary, and the vesting of judicial powers in any other body is unconstitutional.

Rights of arrested denied

Further, there is no provision for the person remanded to be informed of the grounds of arrest, nor is there any guarantee that legal representation will be allowed. This is because the police are prone to applying the exclusion under section 28A(8) of the Criminal Procedure Code to deny access to legal representation.

This is another serious matter, as access to legal representation for persons facing serious allegation of terrorism and the prospect of loss of liberty should not be denied.

Pota also confers draconian powers on the inquiry officer – who is not expressly defined in Pota – tasked with investigating the allegations against the accused person and presenting the evidence to the prevention of terrorism board (“POTB”).  In this regard the normal rules of evidence and criminal procedure are excluded, and the inquiry officer may procure evidence by any means.

The inquiry officer then presents his/her report to POTB and there is no provision for POTB to inquire into the report or require further investigation. POTB has extensive powers – it may grant a detention order of up to two years, or a restricted residence order of up to five years.

These periods of detention or restricted residence may be subsequently renewed for an indeterminate period.

These orders are to be made by POTB without due process, inasmuch as the accused person is denied the right to make any legal representation to the POTB.

Secret hearings

Next, the argument that POTA cannot be compared with the ISA because it is no longer the Minister of Home Affairs who decides on the detention or restriction order, is specious.

Members of the POTB are appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (but following convention, upon the advice of the government) and can be dismissed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong at any time.

This absence of security of tenure undermines whatever independence POTB purports to have.  Only the chairman is required to have legal experience, and there is no provision that he or she must be, or must be qualified to be, a judge. We have seen from the practice of the Prevention of Crime Act 1959 that the names of the members of the prevention of crime board have not been made public.

It is likely to be no different for members of POTB. The fact that POTB hearings will not be held in public means, in effect, that POTA will allow secret hearings by a secret panel. There will be no transparency.

One of the most offensive aspects of POTA is its absolute ouster of judicial scrutiny. No judicial review of the detention order or the restriction order is possible. This is an affront to the Judiciary and is further contrary to article 8 of the federal constitution, which guarantees equality and equal protection before the law.

The small concession that courts can review procedural compliance is illusory in practice since POTB determines its own procedures.

Violating laws to fight terrorism

The Malaysian Bar, the Sabah Law Association and the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak take the view that the answer to the fight against terrorism does not lie in oppressive laws that violate our adherence to the rule of law, due process and constitutional safeguards.

The war against terrorism requires the strengthening of our ability to detect, gather evidence, investigate and deal with the threat of terrorism in a holistic manner.  We must eschew shortcuts or quick fixes that seemingly provide short-term solutions but no long-term result.

We are aware of the evolving threat of global terrorism and the efforts by the government to adapt in order to counter it domestically.

We are supportive of these efforts, but maintain that the war on terrorism must be won without compromising the rule of law, human rights and principles of natural justice.

The Malaysian Bar, the Sabah Law Association and the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak reject this attempt by the government to revive detention without trial, repeated renewals of such detention, the ouster of the jurisdiction of the judiciary, and the limitation or denial of the rights of suspected persons to due process of law.

We urge the government to withdraw POTA from being tabled in the Dewan Negara.

The statement is jointly issued by STEVEN THIRU, president of the Malaysian Bar, GBB NANDY @ GAANESH, president of the Sabah Law Association and LEONARD SHIM of the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak.

Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail interfered in MACC work

April 9, 2015

Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail interfered in MACC work

by Hafiz Yatim@www.malaysiakini.com

Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail barred the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) from stopping its prosecution against lawyer Rosli Dahlan in the ‘Copgate affair’.

TS Robert PhangThis was revealed in the High Court in Kuala Lumpur today by former MACC Corruption Prevention and Consultative panel member Robert Phang, who said this was related to him by MACC Chief Commissioner Abu Kassim Mohamed.

Phang said Abu Kassim told him this during his tenure as a Corruption Prevention and Consultative panel member. He was on the panel from February 24, 2009, till January 27, 2011.

The witness was testifying in the RM50 million suit filed by Rosli against MACC for assault and wrongful detention. Phang said Rosli had sent him a letter dated Nov 11, 2010, concerning a charge brought against him by the MACC in the sessions court in Kuala Lumpur in 2007.

“I raised this with Abu Kassim  who informed me that the MACC had no case against Rosli in the Abu Kassimabove prosecution, but he was prevented by the public prosecutor, who is Attorney-General Gani, from discontinuing with the prosecution.

“This is despite (MACC) being aware that the case would result in an acquittal.

“I believe there has been abuse of power, selective prosecution, abuse of prosecutorial discretion, malicious prosecution and prosecutorial misconduct by Gani in the handling of the case against Rosli,” Phang said in reply to questions by Rosli’s counsel Chethan Jethwani. He also produced a statutory declaration dated August16, 2012, describing the meeting to that effect.

No minutes from the MACC panel

MACC’s lawyer Cecil Abraham, formerly an Operations Review panel member of the MACC, asked Phang why there were no minutes from the panel to prove this. However, Phang maintained that the meeting with Abu Kassim really did take place and he reiterated what the MACC Chief told him.

On Monday, Utusan Malaysia made an apology in open court to Rosli for its defamatory article, after the lawyer filed the RM50 million suit against the MACC and the UMNO-owned daily.

RDahlanRosli (right) was arrested at his office, two days before Hari Raya in 2007, for allegedly not abiding by the MACC’s notice to declare his assets, which he described as vague.

He was handcuffed tightly in front of his partners, and produced in court on the even of Hari Raya, and a newspaper report said the charge against Rosli was related to an investigation into a RM27 million cop.

Rosli claimed that the action against him came after he helped draft the affidavits for former Deputy Home Minister Johari Baharom, former Commercial Crime Investigation Department director Ramli Yusuf and six of his men in the arrest of triad kingpin Goh Cheng Poh.

Goh or Tengku Goh, was caught by Ramli’s men in 2007, following a blitzkrieg by the government against the illegal money laundering syndicate and he was placed under restricted residence in Gua Musang, Kelantan.

Goh filed a habeas corpus application, which was backed by the then Inspector-General of Police Musa Hassan. Following the filing of the habeas corpus application, the Attorney-General’s Chambers did not want to draft the affidavit in reply, as required and is normally done, resulting in Rosli to be roped in by Ramli to draft it.

Subsequently, Rosli was charged in the sessions court but was acquitted without his defence being called. Ramli, who the authorities claimed was the “RM27 million cop” was also charged in 2007 but was acquitted.

As a result of this, Rosli and Ramli filed separate suits against Gani for malicious prosecution. Gani tried to strike out the suits, in the High Court and then in the Court of Appeal, and failed both times.

Rosli’s suit against the MACC continues tomorrow before Justice Su Geok Yiam, with a former Deputy Public Prosecutor expected to testify.

Rosli Dahlan: I was just collateral damage in elimination of Dato Ramli Yusuff

April 9, 2015

Rosli Dahlan: I was just collateral damage in elimination of Dato Ramli Yusuff

by FMT Reporters@www.freemalaysiatoday.com (April 8, 2015)

Lawyer Rosli Dahlan testifies in case against MACC for conspiracy to injure his reputation as well as his wrongful arrest.

KUALA LUMPUR: Lawyer Rosli Dahlan yesterday told the High Court that his relationship withRosli Dahlan (new) former Director of Commercial Crimes Investigation Department (CCID) Ramli Bin Yusuff was the reason for what he alleged was a conspiracy to injure his reputation.

“Dato’ Ramli was my former classmate from my days in the International Islamic University. We are friends,” Rosli said in his witness statement which was tendered in court yesterday.

He was testifying in a case which he had commenced against 17 defendants including Utusan Malaysia, its editors and journalists, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and several of its officers including its current chief commissioner Abu Kassim Mohamed, and the Government of Malaysia.

The suit involved claims by Rosli for defamation by Utusan as well as assault and false imprisonment against MACC and the Government of Malaysia.

On Monday, FMT reported that Utusan had tendered a grovelling public apology to Rosli for a defamatory article which it had written about him in 2007.

“I believe that the defendants, in particular, the 5th and 6th defendants targeted me because I was advising Dato’ Ramli who was targeted to be eliminated by the then Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Musa Hassan,” Rosli alleged.

Claiming that Ramli was Musa’s superior at the time of Anwar Ibrahim’s infamous “black eye” incident, he said that Ramli was thereafter perceived as a supporter of Anwar because he had prevented Anwar’s assault and provided him with medical treatment.

“After that incident, Dato’ Ramli was mistrusted and his career stalled. Tan Sri Musa had a mercurial rise and became the Inspector-General of Police,” he added.

He told the Court that Musa had formed an alliance with current Attorney General Gani Patail and Nordin Hassan, the then head of prosecution at the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA).

“All three were key players in Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s prosecution in the first sodomy trial,” he added.

He narrated various incidents which he thought were at the heart of Musa’s enmity with Ramli, including a dispute as to whether the previous management of Malaysian Airlines ought to be prosecuted for financial mismanagement – which Gani was reluctant to do – and the alleged discovery by CCID of links between Musa and a known criminal.

In one instance involving a habeas corpus application the Attorney General had purportedly refused to prepare affidavits on behalf of Ramli’s men, leading to Rosli and his co-counsel C Vijaya Kumar having to take on the task.

“Even the Deputy Minister of Internal Security sought my assistance to prepare his affidavit,” he said.

He said that this eventually led to stories starting to circulate identifying Ramli as a corrupt senior police officer.

Rosli related how Ramli had sought legal advice from him in 2007 in respect of several matters, including an investigation into how Ramli had purportedly acquired assets.

According to his testimony, he was eventually served with two notices under the Anti-Corruption Act, 1997 identifying him as an “associate” of Ramli and requiring him to disclose assets. He said, however, that he was unable to comply with the notices because he was unsure whether they required him to disclose his own assets or assets he held for Ramli.

“Given the vagueness of the Notices and that I was not entirely clear how I was being described as an ‘associate’ and being mindful of my obligations as a solicitor, I prepared a statutory declaration that dealt with my disclosures vis–à–vis Dato’ Ramli. However, I specifically pointed out that I took the view that the Notices that had been served on me were defective and issued in bad faith. I also offered in my statutory declaration to provide any further assistance that was necessary,” his witness statement read.

Rosli testified that on the eve of Hari Raya in 2007, an ACA Officer visited him and asked him to present himself at the ACA office to give a statement.

“I told him that since it was just a matter of recording a statement, I would be able to come the following Thursday as I was about to go on leave for Hari Raya. He agreed with my suggestion and left,” Rosli said.

“After lunch I went back to my office. Shortly thereafter, while I was doing work, I was shocked to see several men barging into my room.”

“They said they were from the ACA and wanted to arrest me.[One] then took out a pair of handcuffs and said he needed to handcuff me. He started playing with his handcuffs to intimidate me.The ACA officers twisted my left arm and my right wrist and handcuffed me so tightly that my right wrist began to bleed as it was tightened to the bone.”

He said that he was then brought me to the ACA’s headquarters in Putrajaya.“I was taken to an underground office where the cells were located. It was only when I got there, that I was served with a notice telling me that I was arrested. I was then stripped of my belt, my shoes and my other personal belongings and placed in one of the cells,” he elaborated.

He was charged the following day.

Claiming that he was marched from the open car park of the courthouse and through its corridors while handcuffed, he added, “It was evident that the ACA officers wanted the horde of pressmen and photographers to publish pictures of me in handcuffs.”

Abu Kassim

He said immediately upon his acquittal of the charge, the Attorney-General announced that he would prefer an appeal. He told the Court that, shortly thereafter, the MACC tried to secure the discontinuance of this action by using the appeal from his acquittal as a bargaining chip.

“I realised that what he wanted was merely for me to withdraw this action and he was using the appeal to secure that objective,” he testified. “I felt nauseous at such Machiavellian conduct,” he added.

He said the entire episode left a deep scar on his reputation, claiming that some of the clients whom he serviced “raised concerns” and had to be placated by his partner. “I had to work very hard to ensure that I did not lose all the clients that I had built up over the years.”

The hearing continued today before Justice Su Geok Yiam.

The Altantuya Murder–The Missing Links

April 8, 2015

The Altantuya Murder–The Missing Links

by Americk Singh Sidhu@www.malaysiakini.com

This is the first time in 34 years I have actually found myself in agreement with former Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his recent, although rather belated, queries in respect of the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder saga. These questions make sense. These are the same questions a very large portion of the Malaysian population has been asking for over eight years now (since 2006).

Khalid Abu Bakar, our beloved Inspector-General of Police (IGP), has in the meantime, been performing backward somersaults trying to avoid the entire issue and instead, appears to have dedicated his entire career to tracking Twitter messages on social media.

‘Twitter Khalid’ has even had the audacity to threaten (which he is very good at) anyone who dares to bring up the issue of ‘motive’ in the grisly murder of an innocent female foreign national at the hands of two of Malaysia’s best trained commandos.

The excuse Khalid has given is that the Federal Court has made a decision and any questioning of the reasons behind that decision would be tantamount to contempt of court. What Khalid has failed miserably to appreciate is the fact that no one is ‘questioning’ that decision. Everyone agrees the decision is correct.

However, it is the question of motive which has never been addressed in any of the three courts this murder trial has progressed through. In fact, evidence in respect of motive was never tendered by the prosecution.

Therefore, as far as Mahathir and I)are concerned, it is still open season on motive. So instead of terrorising twitterers, perhaps Khalid may see fit to revisit this issue with a little more fervour than he has shown in the past.

Despite the press releases being launched from the IGP’s Office, none of them detract from the fact that convicted murderer Sirul Azhar Umar has categorically said no officer from the Polis Di-Raja Malaysia (PDRM) has visited him in Sydney to interview him.

If Khalid disputes this, all he has to do is release the names of those officers who ostensibly attended to Sirul and the exact date and time they clocked in with the detention centre authorities. Inspector Tonny Luggan (the investigating officer in Altantuya’s case) says he was not sent to see Sirul in Sydney, so who was?

Khalid is also reported to have said that “Sirul’s remark showed the fugitive was doing his utmost to bring disrepute and cast doubt over the investigations into the murder case, his involvement and the criminal justice system”.

Yes. That is correct, because it is obvious to everyone that your investigations are incomplete. As the current series of events appear to translate, Sirul is not disputing his involvement in the murder. All he is saying is that others were involved and they haven’t been brought to book so why should he take the rap?

One need not have successfully completed an in-depth course in criminal investigation at Pulapol (Malaysian Police Training Centre) to be able to decipher the glaring holes in this entire saga.A cursory viewing of a couple of episodes of Miami Vice or CSI New York would suffice in providing a clue as to how the matter ought to have been professionally addressed.

The established facts

Azilah Hadri and Sirul have been convicted of the murder of Altantuya by the highest court in our land. This has therefore been proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

In the circumstances, there can be no question that these two gentlemen were in fact responsible for lodging two bullets in this poor lady’s head and thereafter detonating some military grade explosives placed on her body causing it to be dissipated in the vicinity of some secondary jungle on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur.

Sirul, who has, rather astutely, sought refuge at the Villawood detention centre on the outskirts of Sydney, has candidly admitted he was acting under orders and that he has been made a scapegoat for others who had not been brought to court. In other words, he has tacitly admitted to the crime and confirmed that there may have been others behind it.

The question is why would Sirul and Azilah (above) have done this for no apparent reason? The courts have been interested only in whether an offence of murder had been committed and not why it was committed.

The prosecution failed to seek or put forth an explanation. This is really the question which the IGP can provide an answer to if he is so inclined. He certainly has the resources. As long as he possesses the will, he most certainly will find the way.

Khalid, for goodness sake, please, just do your job. At the moment the general public perceive inactivity on your part as yet another ubiquitous and notorious Malaysian cover-up.May I suggest you simply haul up the following characters and ask them these simple questions:

Azilah Why did you and Sirul kill someone you didn’t even know?

DSP Musa Safri (above) (then aide de camp DPM Najib Razak) What exactly did you tell Sirul and Azilah to do to that poor Mongolian lady and who exactly asked you to engage their services?

Nasir Safar (Najib’s special officer) What were you doing driving around in front of Abdul Razak Baginda’s house on the evening of Oct 19, 2006, watching Azilah and Sirul abduct Altantuya?

PM Najib Did you know that four of your staff were involved in this? If so, then why were they?

Deepak Jaikishan (businessman with close ties to Najib’s wife, Rosmah Mansor Who asked you to shut private eye P Balasubramaniam up and get him and his family out of Malaysia immediately after he released SD1 (first statutory declaration)? (This should be easy as Deepak has already confessed to all of this).

Rosmah – Was it you? If not, then who?

Johari Razak (Najib’s younger brother) – Did you telephone senior lawyer Cecil Abraham on the evening of July 3, 2008 and ask him to prepare SD2 for Balasubramaniam to sign? If so why, and on whose behalf?

Cecil – Did you receive a telephone call from Johari Razak on July 3, 2008 to prepare SD2? If so, did you?

Sunil Abraham- (Cecil’s son, who is also a lawyer) – Did you or did you not, assist your father in preparing SD2 and did you then personally deliver it to the Hilton Hotel, KL Sentral on the morning of July 4, 2008?

Zainal Abidin Muhayat – Were you a commissioner for oaths in 2008 and did you have your office at Zul Rafique and Partners, Lorong P Ramlee, Kuala Lumpur? If so, who sent you to the Hilton Hotel, KL Sentral on July 4, 2008 to attest the signature of one Balasubramaniam on SD2?

Nazim Razak (another brother of Najib) – Were you and your wife at the Curve, Mutiara Damansara late in the night of July 3, 2008? If so did you meet one Balasubramaniam  next to the VW showroom?

And if so, did you or did you not, threaten Balasubramaniam to follow the instructions of one Deepak Jaikishan and leave the country with his family immediately, otherwise his family’s safety could not be guaranteed?

Najib – Did you instruct Johari and Nazim to arrange, respectively, for SD2 to be prepared and Balasubramaniam’s subsequent departure from Malaysia? If so, why was that necessary?

Hamzah Zainuddin (UMNO MP for Larut) – Did you, in 2011, offer Balasubramaniam safe passage back to this country and a cash inducement if he pleaded guilty to affirming a false statutory declaration (SD1). If so, why and on behalf of whom?

Khalid, may I also suggest that you contact a senior investigation officer from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) by the name of Abdul Rahman Bachok. He is a very diligent officer and has the entire file on investigations into the circumstances under which Balasubramaniam affirmed SD2. I am sure he will lend you his file and assist you in any way he can.

I believe he is a little annoyed that his file has been closed by the Attorney-General’s Chambers. He had put a lot of effort into his investigations.

You may also care to contact the Brickfields Police Station and ask them why they have not followed up on the Police report I lodged on July 8, 2008 in respect of Balasubramaniam’s disappearance. I have sent them reminders but there has been no response.

All the above ‘persons of interest’ and their answers to the questions posed may possibly assist in revealing a motive for the crime. Is there any reason why you, Mr IGP would be disinclined to pursue the matter further and if so what are those reasons?

AMERICK SIDHU is a senior lawyer and counsel for late P Balasubramaniam and his widow,  A Santamil Selvi.

Sirul Aziz accuses IGP Khalid Ashburn of Lying

April 4, 2015

Sirul Aziz accuses IGP Khalid Ashburn of Lying

by http://www.malaysiakini.com

Zunar on Khalid AshburnHow True, when you consider what he has been doing since becoming IGP

Sirul Azhar Umar has accused Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar of lying when the Police Chief said he sent his men to Australia to meet the fugitive.

Speaking to Malaysiakini at 2.30am Malaysian time today (5:30am Australian time), Sirul said he had trouble sleeping following the IGP’s remarks yesterday, which he described as irresponsible.

“Let me tell you, there were no officers or Police personnel who met me in Australia.He (IGP) is lying to the police force and lying to the public with his claims, and is trying to protect his boss,” Sirul said.

The IGP was reported in Bernama yesterday saying the Police had already met up with Sirul, who is currently under immigration detention in Australia, to gather information on all the allegations he had raised.

However, when asked if any Police had been sent to meet with Sirul, Deputy IGP Noar Rashid said he is in the dark. “Maybe IGP has the knowledge. I do not know, I focus on other things, these things are not within my knowledge,” he told Malaysiakini when met at University Technology Malaysia.

Sirul, on the phone with Malaysiakini, continued, “Certainly, if he cared for all his men, he would send someone (to investigate) but he did not.No one from the Police Force came to see me to investigate or ask about my welfare. I am alone here.”

‘IGP, open intelligence file’

altantuyaSirul, who along with Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri was convicted of murdering Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu, could be heard crying on the other end of the line.

Both served as bodyguard to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, then Deputy Prime Minister, when the murder took place in 2006.

“If the Police and public want to know the truth, I challenge Khalid to open the ‘intelligence’ file,” Sirul retorted. The intelligence files that Sirul was referring to was the original statement he gave to Malaysian Intelligence Police – commonly referred to as the Special Branch – and the Police Criminal Investigation Department.

It was recorded when he was picked up by the Police and brought home from Pakistan, while accompanying then Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

AzilahSirulThat intelligence statement was taken during investigations over Altantuya’s murder, along with his cautioned statement – widely referred to as his “confession” statement – by the Police Criminal Investigation Department.

The prosecution tried to tender the “confession” statement during the Shah Alam High Court trial but was rejected by Justice Mohd Zaki Yasin in a trial within a trial.

Sirul yesterday claimed the widely circulated “confession” statement – put up on the Internet – was false, as there there had been a lot of changes made on it. The IGP was also quoted by Bernama saying that Sirul had not revealed any new information, leaving the police with no grounds to launch a new probe.

“All allegations, including the latest, have been investigated and after examining the outcome of the investigation, we gather there is nothing for us to act further,” the IGP said in response to former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s suggestion that Sirul’s latest allegations be given attention.

Mum wants to meet Dr M

Mahathir, in a scathing blog post on Thursday, asked who had directed the killing of Altantuya following Sirul’s claims that he was merely following orders and Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak had rubbished such latest allegations.

“This is a human life. It would be very cruel for Sirul to die for just following orders,” Mahathir had said on the blog in reference to Malaysiakini‘s exclusive interview with Sirul.

Yesterday, PAS Information Chief Mahfuz Omar also contacted Sirul and told Malaysiakini the former police corporal was touched by what Mahathir had said. Mahfuz is also arranging for Sirul’s mother Piah Samat to meet the former Premier.

Mahfuz had last month brought Piah to meet Sirul at the Villawood detention facility in Sydney. Sirul was picked up by Australian authorities in Brisbane on January 22 following a red notice issued by Interpol.

The Federal Court upheld the murder conviction on Sirul and Azilah for Altantuya’s death on January 13, but Sirul had already left the country by then.

Why is A-G Gani Patail afraid to go to trial against Rosli Dahlan?

April 1, 2015

Why is A-G Gani Patail afraid to go to trial against Rosli Dahlan?

by Din Merican

Rosli Dahlan (new)This morning the Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal by Attorney-General Gani Patail and 10 others  against Lawyer Rosli Dahlan. The Court of Appeal found that the A-G’s appeal had no merits. For full reports on this, see various links below:





Previously, all the major newspapers  which were sued by Rosli had either apologised to him or were found liable by the Courts. The New Straits Times and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) were found guilty for defamation and were ordered to pay RM300,000.

What the lay public may not be aware is that all these appeals by A-G Gani Patail are merely tactical moves‎ called interlocutory applications to stall the trial. In a connected case filed in 2009 where Rosli sued the MACC Chief Commissioner and its officers, the MACC represented by the A-G’s  Chambers also avoided going to trial by striking out Rosli’s suit twice. Rosli appealed and the case was restored.

Gani, Musa and Abu KassimThis time around when A-G Gani Patail himself is sued as the first Defendant followed by former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan, MACC Chief Commissioner Tan Sri Abu  Kassim, Dato Nordin Hassan  and Dato  Razak Musa (MACC’s Director of Prosecution), A-G Gani Patail did not want to take chances. He did not trust the A-G Chambers to defend him. He did not trust the government’s lawyers to act for him. So, Gani hired an external lawyer. He hired senior lawyer Tan Sri Cecil Abraham.

Tan Sri Cecil is a very expensive lawyer. He is the same lawyer implicated in the PI Bala Statutory Cecil AbrahamDeclaration case which the Bar Council is taking disciplinary action against. Another senior lawyer that the Bar Council is considering taking disciplinary action against is Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah who prosecuted Anwar Ibrahim’s appeal. It seems that A-G Gani Patail will appoint Shafee for difficult criminal cases and Cecil for difficult civil cases.

We the taxpayers can ask what is the point of having Gani as A-G then? But the more stark observation is why is the A-G, the MACC and the government being represented by lawyers who are the subject of disciplinary issues?

When a government agency like the MACC preaches about integrity, honesty and transparency, should not the government’s advisers and legal representatives also be of unquestionable character? That is an observation that most people have made and I am just voicing it out for our government leadership to ponder.

Coming back to the A-G’s  appeal that was dismissed this morning , the news reports also stated that cost of RM25,000 was ordered against the A-G. This seems like a strong rebuke by the Court of Appeal judges against the A-G for  hiring an external lawyer to defend him. What taxpayers want to know is  how much is Cecil being paid and whether A-G Gani Patail is footing the bill himself or whether the government, meaning us taxpayers, is underwriting the A-G’s legal cost?

If the AG-C had acted for them it would have been free, but I can’t imagine Cecil doing pro bono work for the government. Or is there some tradeoff where Cecil Abraham gets other government legal work at inflated fees. Is that not gratification? The MACC should investigate this.

The news reports also stated that Cecil asked the Court of Appeal to stay the proceedings and change the trial Judge at the High Court. Isn’t that an insult to the judicial system when the A-G himself is suggesting that the judge is not impartial?  We see private litigants saying that. But is it appropriate for the A-G to take that stand?

Against the accusation by Cecil Abraham against the trial judge, the Court of Appeal Judges namely Hamid  Sultan Abu Backer, George  Varghese and Vernon Ong  stated almost rebukingly to Cecil  that they had subjected the trial judge’s grounds of judgement to an acid test and found it to be reasonable.

I think it is terrible for Cecil to ask for a change of Judge just because the judge had ruled that A-G Gani Patail and other public authorities do not enjoy absolute immunity when they act maliciously against a private citizen. It seems to suggest that A-G Gani Patail will only accept if judges rule in his favor but will not accept when judges rule against him like in this case by Lawyer Rosli. I think the A-G being part of the judicial and legal service is undermining respect for the service by such actions. Not to mention he doesn’t trust the very department that he heads to defend him!

That brings me to the point of this whole exercise by the A-G– why is Gani Patail  afraid to go to trial against Lawyer Rosli Dahlan?

Anwar Ibrahim Ops LeaderWhen the Sodomy 2 charges were made against Anwar Ibrahim, the governmeny accused Anwar of being afraid to go to trial to prove his innocence just because  Anwar filed interlocutory applications. The AG-C and UMNO accused Anwar of delaying tactics and then rationalised that to mean that Anwar is guilty. Such easy deductions.

Thus, by the same logic, can we now say that A-G Gani Patail is filing all these interlocutories because he is afraid to go to trial.  And he is afraid to go to trial because he knows that Rosli is telling the truth. That Rosli was innocent all along and was victimized just because he defended Dato Ramli Yusuff.  Or is there something more that the A-G is fearful about  that will be disclosed in the trial – for example, Rosli’s allegations that Musa Hassan was working with the gambling syndicate or that Gani had consorted with questionable characters like Shahidan Shafee during Haj trips like how former Eusofe Chin went on holiday in New Zealand with VK Linggam?

There may be explosive revelations during the trial beginning April 6 before Judge Su Geok Yam where Rosli has sued the MACC and its officers for conspiracy to injure him. Perhaps A-G Gani Patail is afraid that the conspiracy will be revealed especially since all the newspapers have admitted that they were fed information by sources within MACC. Perhaps that is the reason A-G Gani Patail has engaged Cecil Abraham to block the trial from proceeding. There are just too many possibilities merely because the delaying tactics by A-G Gani Patail is perplexing.

I say to Gani Patail – stop all these tricks! Go to trial and prove your innocence. Don’t hide behind the cloak of immunity. Be a gentleman, fight fair and square. After all what is there to fear? Rosli is just a private lawyer without any political patronage nor any godfather backing him. He has faithfully fought all his legal  battles within the system and therefore Gani should face him squarely in court.

I say to all Malaysians let us pray for Rosli that he will get the justice that he deserves. In the face of the might of the whole establishment, he has stood unwaveringly by his faith and he has given us hope by the small victories that he has achieved thus far. The machinations by men cannot overcome the will of God.  Man proposes but God disposes.  Let us pray for Rosli on April 6 until the conclusion of his trial