Cops add to their arsenal, costs supplier 5 years

Police violence at Bersih 3

Police violence at Bersih 3 [Photograph:]

According to a Borneo Post article, when a police patrol approached a group of men, the men fled and all got away - all but one. A 30-year-old named Doye was the unfortunate one that did not get away. Police claim that during the initial body search, a "knuckleduster" was found in his underpants. That was on the night of May 23. On May 31 Doye pleaded guilty and was convicted by the judge (Malaysia abolished jury trials in 1995) of violation of Malaysia's Offensives Weapons Act. Until recently, conviction for carrying offensive weapons in public places resulted in a maximum of two years imprisonment and whipping. But in 2014 the Act was amended to increase the maximum imprisonment to ten years, with a minimum of five years.

From the article, it seems Doye had no prior offense, and no legal representative in court to plead his case. 1 Doye's understanding of the proceedings and his rights were probably further limited by his status as a "foreigner" - an Indonesian. And so, barely a week after capture, Doye was sent to begin serving five years in Malaysia's prisons, where occupancy level is already at 99.6%, and there are 18 deaths per month on average.

The fate of the knuckleduster was not reported, but given that it was reported that police used a knuckleduster when beating protesters in 2013, redeployment of the knuckles for police use surely must be an option under consideration.

  1. Even a former Malaysia Court of Appeal judge, Datuk Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus, argues: The system should be that no person should be sentenced without him being represented by a lawyer. The court must be sure that when a person has gone to plead in mitigation, he is represented, and that sentencing shouldn't be done otherwise.


Addicts and Illegals

"...a stern-faced member of the Royal Malaysia Police - in helmet, battle fatigues, and bullet-proof vest - posing for the publicity shot, with assault rifle casually pointed towards the head of a toddler..."