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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

DPP objects to judge, Adam Adli's case postponed again



Former student activist Adam Adli Abdul Halim's appeal has been postponed at the eleventh hour today, following an objection by the deputy public prosecutor who requested the judge leading the three-member bench to recuse himself.
This is the second time his appeal has been postponed.
DPP Faiza Mohd Salleh requested Justice Mohtarudin Baki to recuse himself on the ground that he led in the other panel which had decided on the Mohd Safwan Anang's case.
“As it involves the same ceramah and place, the prosecution is worried over the outcome of this appeal,” Faiza said.
Senior lawyer Gurdial Singh Nijar objected to the application because at the last session, there was no indication that the prosecution would do so.
“Furthermore, we would only use one issue regarding Safwan, as there are other issues which would be brought regarding Section 3 of the Sedition Act 1948.
“The other issues on the matter are new and there is no evidence to suggest his lordship (Justice Mohtarudin) may decide in our favour, or otherwise” he told the bench.
Faiza reiterated that the prosecution was concerned since Justice Mohtarudin was in the panel that decided on Safwan's case.
Justice Mohtarudin then decided to recuse himself from the bench and ordered that a new panel be formed to hear this appeal.
“Justice must be done and must also be seen to be done,” he said, and directed the court to fix tomorrow for case management.
The other judges were Justice Harminder Singh Dhaliwal and Justice Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil.
Adam Adli is appealing against his RM5,000 fine which was imposed by the Kuala Lumpur High Court after it upheld the conviction, while the KL Sessions Court imposed a 12-month jail sentence for sedition. The prosecution is also cross-appealing on the fine.
He was found guilty of giving a seditious speech at a rally in the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall in Jalan Maharajalela, Dang Wangi here between 8.55pm and 11.15pm on May 13, 2013, a week after the 13th general election.

It was reported on Dec 20 that the Court of Appeal had unanimously acquitted Safwan on the grounds that his statement did not have a seditious tendency.
Justice Prasad Sandosham Abraham, (now Federal Court judge) who wrote the unanimous judgment said courts must test objectively whether Safwan’s statement indeed has seditious tendency - as laid out in the late Karpal Singh case which is a precedent - or was merely political commentary.
Safwan was accused of making a speech encouraging the people to topple the government through illegal means at the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall, on the same day.- Mkini

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