Can Police Take You Back to Police Station Once Bail Been Granted?

Many times we could find our friends and family members after being charged in court and been released on court bail or been released unconditionally being re-arrested by the police or by law enforcement officers outside court for the same offence based on the same facts. This happened to Jones. Some weeks ago, Jones was arrested by the police, produced in court and was charged for wrongfully confining James with intent to extort some property from James before a magistrates’ court. Jones was released on court bail after a date for trial was fixed, but, instead of being allowed to go home, Jones was re-arrested without a warrant of arrest by the police for the same offence of which Jones was charged and was taken to the Criminal Investigation Department for photographing and fingerprinting. Jones spent a few hours in the police station before being allowed to go home. On the day the case was fixed for trial, Jones came before the Magistrate court again and was discharged by the court unconditionally after the prosecution offered no evidence against him on the ground that Jones never committed the offence alleged. Jones’ reputation was tarnished and after consulting his lawyers, Jones […] read more

Is Kissing In Public Legal and An Acceptable Norm in Malaysia?

Malaysia is a multicultural country and it is not common to see Malaysians kissing in public but we may at times have some opportunities of seeing newly married couples kissing in the presence of their guests during wedding dinners. Most of the time when they were asked and teased by MCs to kiss and in amorous embrace, these newlywed couples may be seen to be very uncomfortable and shy. They had to do it especially when some of their guests insisted that they have to do it. What normally would be our reaction to such act then? Annoyed? Embarrassed? What is the position of the law in Malaysia? In a recent case, Ooi Kean Thong and Siow Ai Wei who were students were caught by the authorities when they were locked in an amorous embrace in a park beside the famous landmark, the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur. They were charged with disorderly behavior in public. The case went to the Federal Court of Malaysia. The Chief Justice, Tun Ahmad Fairuz commented that: “In England, those acts are acceptable to the people of that country, but, is kissing and hugging acceptable to Malaysian citizens? The federal court rejected a […] read more

Should we abolish death penalty?

Many countries in the world have abolished the death penalty, but, why Malaysia still cling on to death penalty as a form of punishment when many other countries had done away with it? We have several offences in statutes that provided for death penalty in Malaysia which include, murder and waging war against the King under the Penal Code, kidnapping for ransom under section 3 of the Kidnapping Act 1960 and trafficking dangerous drugs under 39B of the Dangerous Drugs 1952. Upon being found guilty, most death penalties are mandatory and the trial Judge has no discretion at all when come to sentencing to consider other range of possible sentences such as imprisonment in accordance with the circumstances of each and individual case. The sentence of death has been fixed by Parliament. It has been argued before the court that the death penalty is unconstitutional as it takes away the discretionary power of the Judges when passing sentences. No amount of mitigation put forward and sympathy from judges could this be changed. In handling criminal cases, the worst fear is that judges may hang an innocent person accused who never committed the crime charged. The famous case of Karthigesu some […] read more

What Risks You Face If You Sell Off Your Car When You Could Not Carry On Payments of Installments?

Here is the story… James faced financial problem and could not continue the repayment of the installments of his car. In order to avoid his car from being repossessed and be auctioned off cheaply by the finance company, James, then sold his car to John cheaply with a condition that John has to continue the repayment of the remaining installments to the finance company. John was very pleased to have the car because it was a good new car, yet, been sold cheaply by James to him. Relevant transfer forms were pre-signed by both James and John and the transfer could not be effected pending repayments of all installments due to the finance company. Three months later on, John defaulted and did not continue paying on behalf of James the remaining installments to the finance company. The finance company then issued a demand letter to James to pay the installments due to the company. This then was also followed by a notice to repossess the car by the finance company to James. John could not be traced and the car was also gone with him. James was very desperate as James also could not pay. Further, James also thought that […] read more

Equality of Arms in Criminal Justice

Equality Of Arms The principle of equality of arms is classified as a sub-principle of fairness, whereby the accuser and the accused must be treated equally before the law. This approach is clearly endorsed in various instruments of international tribunals, and is reflected in the right to legal counsel at the expense of the Tribunal where the accused is indigent, the presumption of innocence and the requirement that guilt must be proven beyond reasonable doubt. The International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (“ICCPR”) is one of the most important instruments that codifies civil and human rights including the right to a fair trial, in which, has been adopted by most countries of the world and Malaysia, being a member of the United Nations should make this ICCPR as part of our law. As could be observed the right to “equality of arms” is enshrined in the ICCPR and these rights include four fundamental fair trial principles: All parties, including the defendant, must have an equal opportunity to present evidence and arguments before the court; No party to the proceedings should benefit from a substantive advantage over the other; All persons must have access to fair and effective remedies; Everyone […] read more

No Will? Think again whether you should have one.

No Will? Think again whether you should have one. What is Will? A Will is just a simple instrument – it list out all your assets and to whom you want to give the assets to in the future, who administer these assets on your behalf and distribute your assets according to your instruction upon death. A Will can also be a complex one where you direct that your assets only be given to specific beneficiaries upon them satisfying certain criteria. But a simple instrument like a Will can make a lot of difference as to the distribution of your assets and the well being of your descendants. For many, it’s a taboo for making a Will, especially for young people. “Why should I make a Will when I’m still young, healthy and able to manage my assets?” “Why should I make a Will? My assets will automatically go to my children and wife once I’m gone.” It may seem straightforward than it should be. However, a story of a young executive who dies at early age may change your view. Life of a Successful Man John (not his real name) was an aspiring and energetic young man who had high vision of how his future going to be. […] read more