Saturday, May 02, 2015

Overnight detentions and remand really unnecessary for peaceful assembly charges?

Overnight detention is totally unwarranted - the police at the end of the day when they have completed the investigation for the day can always release the 'suspect' on police bail requiring the suspect to re-appear the following day or thereafter when the presence of the suspect is required for further investigation. Surely, someone like Ambiga will turn up as required...

Now, when a 'suspect' chooses not to give a statement to the police, or elects to just only say, ' whatever I want to say, I will say in court' - what else is there to justify the keeping of a suspect.

Well, there is:-
# Taking of finger prints - well, this can be done pretty fast
# Taking of photographs - well, this too can be done pretty fast
# Identification Parade - for witnesses to come in and identify the suspect in a line-up > well in the case of a peaceful assembly, surely this will also not take too much time, since there should already be sufficient photographs and video recordings made by the police, and there would already be sufficient police witnesses then and there to be able to do the needful...
Is there anything else? Not that I can think off

Now, is there not the Lockup Rules. 1953, in rule 20 that requires that All prisoners have to be placed in a lock-up after arrest. This is, I believe, mandatory after 6.30 p.m. (see rule 20 of the Lockup Rules). The Rules provide that prisoners could not be moved out of the lockup between 6.30 p.m. and 6.30 a.m. which also must mean that no interrogation could be conducted during these hours. 

Were they 'interviewing' suspects overnight depriving them of sleep and rest? Well, would this not be torture? Would this also not be wrong?

If the police is so convinced of the guilt of a suspect - then, just charge them in court. Overnight detention and extended remand should never be used to punish or even 'deter others' from doing something. Remember, the only reason for the detention is for the purpose of police investigation - and that too should really be police investigation that requires the physical presence of the suspect there in police custody. It is wrong to keep someone in police custody whilst the police go out and do investigation.... or try to gather evidence. 

Our attention is drawn to cases where prominent persons are arrested - but this must not be the case, we should be concerned with everyone being treated in such a way. Let's not forget that one is presumed innocent until one is proven guilty in a court of law. 

Malaysia seems to want to 'silence' any dissent or differing opinions... but are we not a democracy and not a dictatorship. If so, freedom of expression, opinion and the right to peaceful assembly must be respected...

Now, recently even the legitimate right to workers to picket have been threatened - see 11 picketing workers charged for EXCESSIVE NOISE?

12:12PM May 2, 2015

Cops want remand for Ambiga, Rafizi to be arrested

Police wants to detain former Bar Council chairperson Ambiga Sreenevasan for more than the 24 hours it is allowed to hold her and is now seeking a remand to do so.
A remand hearing is due to be held at the Jinjang police detention centre, where DAP national organising secretary Anthony Loke and PSM secretary-general Arutchelvan will also know if they will be remanded.

The duo were detained overnight at the detention centre while Ambiga was held overnight at the Dang Wangi district police headquarters.

They were taken in last night for their involvement in yesterday's anti-GST protest.

A team of lawyers entered the detention centre around 11.10am for the hearing while Ambiga arrived in a police van at about 11.50am.

She appeared in good spirits, smiling and waving at the media, as the vehicle entered the detention centre.

Also spotted in the vehicle is PAS central committee member Hatta Ramli who surrendered earlier today, on police request.

Meanwhile, PKR vice president Rafizi Ramli said he has been summoned by police to the Kuala Lumpur police headquarters and expects to be arrested.

"Most probably (I) will be detained like the others," he said in a Whatsapp message.

[More to follow]
gel Aw

Ambiga freed, 29 youths remanded three days

Police have failed to obtain a remand for former Bar Council president Ambiga Sreenevasan arrested during the anti-GST protest yesterday, but the 29 youths detained were not as fortunate.
According to lawyer Michelle Yesudas, 23 of the youths were remanded for three days while six more minors were remanded for a day.

Other than Ambiga, others freed after the session today are DAP national organising secretary Anthony Loke, PAS central committee member Hatta Ramli and PSM secretary-general S Arutchelvan.

The multiple arrests following the peaceful May Day rally yesterday in Kuala Lumpur have sparked an outcry from civil society, calling it an abuse of police powers.

[More to follow] - Malaysiakini

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