Friday, 10 August 2012

Bizarre decision by the Court of Appeal today

The news from TheStar today Wednesday 8 August 2012:

Appeals Court restores bound over decision on Noor Afizal 

National Tenpin bowling ace Noor Afizal Azizan escaped custodial sentence as the Appeals Court Wednesday allowed his appeal to restore the decision of a Sessions Court which bound him over for good behaviour for five years, in a sum of RM25,000 for committing statutory rape.

A three-member panel led by Court of Appeal president Tan Sri Raus Md Sharif unanimously set aside the five-year jail term imposed on Noor Afizal by the Malacca High Court in allowing the prosecution's appeal for an enhanced sentence.
Raus, in his decision, agreed with counsel Hisyam Teh Poh Teik that public interest would not be served if Noor Afizal was sent to jail as he had a bright future.

Court of Appeal Judges Datuk K. N. Segara and Datuk Azhar Ma'ahwere the other two judges presiding on the panel.

On July 5, last year, the Malacca Sessions Court bound over Noor Afizal, 21, for good behaviour on a bond of RM25,000 for five years in one surety after he pleaded guilty to committing the offence on a 13-year-old girl at a hotel in Ayer Keroh, Malacca between 12.30am and 5am on June 5, 2009. - Bernama

I think there is something wrong in this story, a rape is a rape and is therefore a serious crime punishable by a custodial sentence, and if the reporter is to be believed, the President of the COA said that "public interest would not be served if Noor Afizal was sent to jail as he had a bright future"..... really your Learned Lordships? The perpetrator of the crime does not go to jail because he has a bright future? Maybe the full argument was not reported but the gist of the decision is frightening to us innocent bystanders who have underaged daughters to say the least.

Wow, maybe next time a good defense counsel could argue that Rafizi who is being charged under BAFIA if found guilty need not go to jail as he is exposing a possible wrongdoing and public interest would not be served if he is sent to jail as Rafizi has a bright future in politics? 

Some one said that "Not only must Justice be done; it must also be seen to be done" but today the COA does not show that justice is seen to be done with this bizarre decision. 

It is a sad day today but definitely bright day for those who have a bright future. 


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