LGE acquittal shocked everybody

 

 Acquitting the Minister of Finance Lim Guang Eng of corruption charges without enough explanation is a mockery to Malaysia rule of law, the lawyer groups said.

“The trend of dropping charges against Pakatan Harapan politicians is a mockery of our rule of law, whereby it gives a wrong reflection to the society that those in power could manipulate the law to their benefit,” said International Women’s Alliance for Family Institution and Quality Education (WAFIQ) Law and Human Rights Bureau head Fatihah Jamhari .

 “At the very least, proffer an explanation why the charges were dropped, especially considering it has become a glaring trend where cases against Pakatan Harapan politicians are being dropped.

“If this trend continues, it will only perpetuate the very core wrongs we are trying to fix as a society,” said Fatihah.

The Star Online also quoted Young Professionals (CP) chief executive Faidhur Rahman saying that laws, including the Constitution, need to be amended to prevent selective prosecution and acquittal of cronies.

“Those associated with the previous Barisan Nasional government, including former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak are being prosecuted, while those associated with the new ruling coalition get away scot-free.

“The whole affair smacks of cronyism at its worst,” said Faidhur.

The lawyer groups have also called for the resignation of Attorney-General Tommy Thomas for dropping corruption charges against Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, the Star reported.

The High Court today acquitted Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng and businesswoman Phang Li Koon from two allegations of corruption and abuse of power relating to the purchase of bungalow below market price.

High Court Judge Datuk Hadhariah Syed Ismail acquitted both the accused and decided the charges to be dropped despite the prosecutor only proposed the case to be discharged not amounting to an acquittal.

The decision was made by the judge at the proceeding that was fixed today to get the results of the representations that were sent by the two accused to the Attorney General Office last month.

During the proceeding, Deputy Public Prosecutor, Datuk Masri Mohd. Daud told the court that the prosecutors have received and studied the representations that were sent by the defendants.

Masri said, the prosecutors have decided to drop the charges on both the accused and requested the Court to dismiss not amounting to acquittal.

However the prosecutor’s application was rejected by Lim Guan Eng’s lawyer, Ramkarpal Singh who applied for his client to be acquitted by the court.

Judge Hadhariah said, in the trial’s proceeding 25 witnesses have been called and 20 witnesses will possibly be called to give their statements.

“There should not be an “instalment case” in the Court and there should be a full stop and a commer is not allowed after the case has been going on with 25 witnesses and all of a sudden the case has to be postponed awhile.

“After studying the whole case, I decide to acquit both the accused from the two charges against them,”Hadhariah said.

The joint trial of Lim Guan Eng the former Chief Minister of Penang and Phang was in connection to the conversion of land from agriculture to residential status and the purchase of a plot of land and a bungalow at below market value.

He was charged using his position to gain gratification for himself and his wife Betty Chew by approving the application for conversion of agricultural land to a public housing zone in Balik Pulau to Magnificient Emblem Sdn. Bhd.

Guan Eng was also charged of using his position to obtain a piece of land and bungalow at No.25, Jalan Pinhorn on July 28, 2015 from Phang for RM2.8 million at below market value. –Malaysia World News       

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