Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Anwar sodomy case: No decision on trial transfer

Sodomy trial transfer: No decision today - Malaysiakini

Beh Lih Yi Oct 7, 08 12:09am

Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim will likely have to wait a little longer to find out if his sodomy trial will be transferred to a higher court.

This morning Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court judge SM Komathy Suppiah dismissed a preliminary objection raised by the prosecution that she had no choice but to transfer the case to a higher court.

She said that she had the jurisdiction to hear the defence team's objections against the transfer notice. This was then followed by a submission by Anwar's lead lawyer Sulaiman Abdullah.

While much of the morning session today was taken up by arguments on technical matters between the defence team and the prosecution, Komathy nevertheless ruled that she would be hearing further submissions from Sulaiman after lunch on their objection to the transfer.

And tomorrow morning she would be hearing submissions from the prosecution as to why the matter should be transferred to the High Court.A decision on the matter is only expected after that.‘

Court has no choice'

On Sept 24, Komathy had reserved her judgment after hearing submissions from both the prosecution and the defence team.

Then the prosecution had argued that the court "has no choice" but to allow the transfer as it has no power to reject the move.

This position was nevertheless challenged by Anwar's legal team.Anwar's lawyers had objected the transfer certificate as it was signed by attorney-general (AG) Abdul Gani Patail.

Their objection was on the basis that the AG should not have played any role in this case as he was being investigated following a complaint that he had tampered with evidence in Anwar's trials 10 years ago.Anwar had claimed trial on
Aug 7 when charged with sodomising his former aide, 23-year-old Mohd Saiful
Bukhari Azlan.

If convicted, he could face a 20-year jail term. He is currently out on a RM20,000 personal bond.

The police presence at the Jalan Duta court complex this morning was nominal, unlike previous times when truckloads of federal reserve unit members were positioned and stringent checkpoints were set up.

Anwar arrived at the court room at about 9.50am, accompanied by his wife and PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail. - Malaysiakini

The Star report here and Bernama here.

No comments: