Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Anwar's Case: Judge Throws Out DNA Items

Very Well Said Lord Justice! (And now is your Lordship going to be transferred or made to retire?) That happened to Justice Datuk Lau Bee Lan in the Case Of The 'Herald' vs Government.

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here this morning ruled the towel, toothbrush and mineral water bottle — taken for DNA profiling from the lockup where Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was detained three years ago — were obtained by unfair means and should be excluded from the trial.

Aside the three items, Judge Datuk Mohd Zabidin Mohd Diah further ruled any items related to the three are to also be excluded from the trial.

He made the ruling following submissions made yesterday by both the prosecution and defence in the trial-within-a-trial in the Opposition leader’s sodomy case. Members of the public, present in court, applauded and cheered when the Mohd Zabidin delivered the ruling.

Last Wednesday, the High Court allowed Anwar’s application for a trial-within-a-trial to determine the admissibility of four items which he alleged were obtained illegally following his arrest and detention in July 2008. The items comprised a toothbrush, a ‘Good Morning’ towel, a ‘Cactus’ brand mineral water bottle and a strand of hair which were taken from the Kuala Lumpur police headquarters lockup on July 17, 2008.

Yesterday, in his submissions, Solicitor-General II Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abiden argued the defence team had not been able to support allegations Anwar’s arrest was unlawful and the evidence collected from the lockup were obtained illegally.

Lead defence counsel Karpal Singh, however, had insisted the exhibits be rejected as they were obtained by trick and deception.

He stated there was no reason for Anwar to be arrested at 12.30pm on July 16, 2008, when the appointment to record his statement at the police headquarters was at 2pm, and that the recording of his statement could have been completed the same evening without the need for his client to spend the night there.

Anwar, 63, had claimed trial to performing carnal intercourse against the order of nature on former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan, 25, at a condominium unit in Bukit Damansara, Kuala Lumpur, between 3.15pm and 4pm on June 26, 2008. Hearing resumes tomorrow morning.

Justice Datuk Lau Bee Lan in 'Herald's' Case.

KUALA LUMPUR:Three independent minded judges who have made some rulings unfavourable to the Barisan Nasional government are expected to be transferred out of the High Court’s Appellate and Special Powers division soon. They are due to be moved to the High Court’s Commercial Division, where they will no longer be able to hear politically linked cases.The three are Justice Datuk Alizatul Khair Osman Khairuddin, Justice Lau Bee Lan and Justice Mohamad Ariff Md Yusoff.

Court insiders as saying that the judges will be transferred this month. Justice Alizatul recently declared that Umno’s Abu Hassan Sarif was no longer the Kedah state assemblyman for Kota Siputeh and ordered the Election Commission to hold a by-election…An appeal is now pending against her judgment. Justice Lau heard the case in which deposed Mentri Besar Mohammad Jamaluddin of Pakatan Rakyat challenged the legitimacy of his successor, Umno’s Zambry Abdul Kadir, and ruled that the Federal Court must determine four constitutional questions.

However, the Federal Court ordered that the case of who was the rightful Perak Menteri Besar should be heard by the High Court. The case was later heard by a new High Court judge who replaced Justice Lau without the public being given any reason given for theswitch.In what was seen as a stunning rebuff to the Barisan Nasional government and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission’s investigative procedures, Justice Mohamad Ariff recently ruled that MACC had no right to question witnesses in an investigation beyond normal office hours.

The judge also found that the MACC acted illegally when it detained Pakatan Rakyat’s Kajang town councillor Tan Boon Wah overnight at its Selangor head office in Shah Alam. The transfer of the three judges was an attempt by the Umno-led Barisan to strengthen its grip on the judiciary.It says that one of the judges to be named to the Appellate and Special Powers Division is Justice Mohamed Apandi Ali, a former Kelantan Umno treasurer who was appointed Judicial Commissioner in 2003.

Commenting on the expected transfer of the judges, lawyer Edmund Bon told Suara Keadilan that he and many of his colleagues were uneasy about the development. He pointed out that there had not been a single complaint against any of the three judges throughout their service in the Appellate and Special Powers Division.

Since no logical reason could be seen for the decision to move out the judges, he said, there was no escaping the perception that politics was behind it.Note: So do you think that Anwar Ibrahim and RPK will be given proper hearings and justice?

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