Thursday, May 29, 2008

Courageous Thai women takes on the Malaysian Immigration Department

Single foreign women traveling alone, dressing glamorously, found in a "shop lot", a pub, karaoke lounge, bar, massage parlour, spa,.... must have violated their social visit pass -- and must be "sex workers" or "prostitutes" --- this the prejudice that many people have. This is very wrong.

Many a time, we even read reports about "foreign prostitutes" -- and we wonder whether they were really caught selling sex. Did they offer sex for money? -- In Islam, the rules of evidence is so high that you cannot even make such allegations of "khalwat" or "zina" unless there is credible witnesses. But in Malaysia, it is different with them enforcement authorities and some media -- not even the word "alleged" is used. Forget we the principle that all is innocent until proven guilty..

These 5 were arrested and allegedly detained for 34 days -- and when they did challenge their unlawful detention, quickly they were deported.

IT IS GOOD THAT THESE 5 THAI WOMEN are not just allowing their rights to be trampled on BUT are seeking justice in our Malaysian courts -- but will they get it? I wonder.... for after all the case can end being postponed and postponed for years and years..... BUT then the government could step in and expedite the whole trial.

Oh yes, the other thing that the government may do is to raise some TECHNICAL OBJECTION and get the case struck off -- and again, there will be no justice for this case.

But then, the GOVERNMENT can also do the right thing ----and expedite the case. They can immediately conduct an independent investigation, and if true, then do the necessary to ensure that it never repeats itself. Some officers may also have to be reprimanded -- and punished.

Were they detained so long because they refused to PAY .....? Is there such things happening there in the Immigration Department -- I say....INVESTIGATE.

5 Thai women could have come to Malaysia as tourist, wanting to see the sights, do some shopping and have fun -- and they get arrested, detained for 34 days and then deported.....and it is so wrong.


Five Thai women sue Immigration
By : Sheridan Mahavera

JOHOR BARU: Five Thai women are suing the Immigration Department and the government for detaining them unlawfully for 34 days between February and April.

The women, who are seeking RM1 million each in damages, were picked up during a raid by the Immigration Department on a shop lot in Taman Desa Tebrau.

They are claiming that they were deported on April 2 when they had filed a habeas corpus application against their detention.

The five are Phanbunma Prakobkaew, Chanfen Moonsin, Sirikan Chatchinda, Chuthamas Burce and Nitaya Chantapho - all aged between 30 and 36 years old - from Maung Khonkaen, Thailand.

They were arrested on Feb 29 on suspicion of violating their social visit passes.
The suit named Immigration Department investigations officer Hashim Japar, the department's enforcement chief Salleh Bahari, the Pekan Nenas Immigration detention centre warden, the department's Johor director and the government as defendants.

In their writ of summons, filed at the High Court yesterday, the five claimed that their detention violated the Immigration Act and Article 5(3) of the Federal Constitution.

According to the regulations, the Immigration Department should only have held them for a period of 14 days, after which it must either obtain a court order to extend their detention, charge them in court or set them free.

From the time they were arrested to the date they were deported on April 2, the women claimed that the Immigration Department and its officers failed to get the appropriate court order to hold them for more than 14 days.

They said that throughout their detention, they were not taken before a magistrate to get any court order and therefore their detention was unlawful.

When the five filed their habeas corpus application on April 2 the hearing was postponed to the next day.

However, on the evening of April 2, the department ordered that they be deported to Thailand.

No comments: