Sodomy II Starts Tomorrow

The Malaysian Insider


By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal and Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani.

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 2 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy trial will start tomorrow after he failed in his last-ditch attempt to delay proceedings this afternoon.

But the defence and prosecution started a verbal joust today on an issue which is likely to be the cornerstone of the trial — whether there was penetration.

High Court judge Mohamad Zabidin Mohd Diah ruled this afternoon that he would not postpone the trial and ordered the case to proceed at 2.30pm tomorrow, owing to the fact that he did not find any “special circumstances” to allow the postponement to take place.

Lead counsel for Anwar’s defense team, Karpal Singh had, in his effort to win a stay pointed out that based on the two medical reports obtained from doctors who examined the complainant, the findings did not point to the fundamental element of penetration.

Justice Datuk Mohamed Zabidin Mohd Diah had previously refused to strike out the sodomy charges against Anwar, stating that “no conclusive clinical findings suggestive of penetration to the anus/rectum cannot be used as a basis for the Court to use its discretion to strike out the charges.”

According to the judge at the time, the court still needed to hear testimonies from witnesses from the prosecution team.

Karpal today questioned Zabidin’s judgement in the matter.

“How can your lordship say that there was no basis? No conclusive clinical findings had found any penetration to the anus, or the anal rectum.

“Was this not enough for the charge to be struck out? The charge is frivolous, oppressive, prejudicial and abusive of the court process,” said Karpal.

He went on to question the prosecution’s insistence in calling out additional witnesses, claiming that their case had no solid grounds of argument.

“What is the purpose of the prosecution calling other witnesses when the two medical reports take away these arguments?”

The veteran lawyer was referring to two medical reports from Hospital Pusrawi and Hospital Kuala Lumpur which state that no anal penetration had taken place.

The complainant, Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan, had gone to these hospitals for an initial check-up.

However, according to a clinical report by Dr.Osman Abdul Hamid, the doctor who had performed the check-up on Saiful, there was “no rectum bleeding.”

The doctor had also submitted his report which highlighted that Saiful had “alleged to have been assaulted by introduction of plastic into the anus.”

Based on the report, Saiful did not mention who had assaulted him.

However, the judge was not convinced by Karpal’s arguments and he displayed his annoyance with Karpal for questioning his earlier ruling.

“Are you saying that my decision was wrong, that I ought to have granted a stay?” said Mohd Zabidin to which Karpal replied with a resounding yes.

The prosecution team, headed by Datuk Yusof Zainal Abiden, then informed the court that the reports submitted by the two hospitals was only half of the prosecution’s findings.

Yusof asserted that the clinical findings alone were not sufficient, as there were lab reports as well as witnesses to testify on the matter.

[Supporters of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim wave banners in a show of support for the leader of the political opposition. – Pictures by Jack Ooi]

Supporters of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim wave banners in a show of support for the leader of the political opposition. – Pictures by Jack Ooi
During a ten minute recess, another counsel for the prosecution team Noorin Badaruddin explained the situation to reporters.

“We now have medical reports which say that there is presence of semen at the areas of the anus. At that point of time, the medical doctors did not have the benefit of the lab reports.

“The clinical reports alone were not conclusive, so we need to call the doctors, chemists to testify.”

She said that the prosecution expects to call up to 26 witnesses during the course of the trial.

Outside the courtroom, Karpal confirmed that his legal team together with the prosecutor will meet with Chief Judge of Malaya Tan Sri Alauddin Mohd Sheriff tomorrow morning at Putrajaya to discuss the review of their application.

“It depends on what the president of the Court of Appeal will decide in the morning. If he gives us a date in the next three or four days then we will ask him to direct that this trial be deferred until after the hearing of the review by the Federal Court,” he said.

Anwar also reiterated, outside the court, his belief that the trial is politically motivated.

“The findings are inconclusive so how do you proceed with a sexual assault charge with such glaring evidence. It is purely political. Now Datuk Seri Najib and Datin Seri Rosmah said that they are prepared to come but I don’t believe that they will do.

“They will say this for political purpose for the local newspapers like Utusan Malaysia and the rest.

“Therefore they will use the prosecution and the court like they did in the past to deny me my right to have him (Najib) as the witness,” he said.

Anwar also stressed that his lawyers are still waiting for the relevant documents from the attorney general.

“We are now still waiting for documents and one of the critical documents alleged by the prosecution is the DNA, but up to today we have not obtained the specimen for the DNA. As far as we are concerned the DNA comes second.

“The first is the issue of the medical report about the penetration,” he said.

Anwar claimed that the prosecution is not seeking justice but Umno’s interests.

“Apparently as you can see there is a complete rush because that is what Umno is demanding. That is the entire interest of the prosecution and government. There is no justice,” he said.

Earlier, Anwar’s defence team tried in vain to argue for a stay of proceedings, after winning an appointment with the Chief Judge of Malaya Tan Sri Alauddin Mohd Sheriff tomorrow to fix a date to review the Federal Court’s decision on their application to seek more evidence.

Anwar’s lawyer Sankara Nair said Chief Justice Tun Zaki Azmi was not in office today but has directed Allaudin to meet the team tomorrow in Putrajaya.

[Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s court case continues tomorrow at 2.30pm. He is seen here leaving the court while acknowledging his supporters.]

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s court case continues tomorrow at 2.30pm. He is seen here leaving the court while acknowledging his supporters.
This morning, the High Court agreed to adjourn Anwar’s sodomy trial to allow his lawyers to get a date to review a Federal Court ruling that upheld earlier decisions to disallow him from obtaining additional evidence for his case.

Anwar is accused of sodomising his former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan on June 26, 2008 at a posh condominium in the exclusive Bukit Damansara suburb in Kuala Lumpur.

He has denied the charge, saying it’s a conspiracy similar to his first charge in 1998.

The 63-year-old Opposition Leader was freed in September 2004 and later resurrected his political career by winning back his Permatang Pauh parliamentary seat, that was held in the interim by his wife, in a by-election in 2008.

He had earlier led the opposition Pakatan Rakyat to a historic sweep of four states and 82 parliamentary seats in Election 2008.

But he was then mired with the accusation from 24-year-old Saiful, whom Anwar dismissively said was just a “coffee boy”.

The case has been delayed as Anwar’s lawyers tried unsuccessfully to obtain evidence they said was necessary for his defence.

The Attorney-General’s Chambers said they have given all relevant documents and evidence as required by law but Anwar lawyer Sankara Nair, who defended Anwar for his first sodomy charge in 1998, said it was “abuse of due process”.

His legal team is led by noted lawyer Raja Aziz Addruse, who also led the team in 1998, and Karpal who is also national chairman of the DAP, an ally in Anwar’s Pakatan Rakyat coalition that also includes PAS.

Office of Keadilan Youth Chief (AMK)

Pengarang: Shamsul Iskandar

YB Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar @ Yusre bin Mohd. Akin Ahli Parlimen Hang Tuah Jaya (Dikenali Parlimen Bukit Katil sebelum ini) (2013-kini) Mantan Timbalan Menteri Industri Utama (2018-2020) Ketua Penerangan KEADILAN Malaysia (2018-kini) Mantan Naib Presiden KEADILAN (2014-2018) Mantan Ketua Angkatan Muda KEADILAN (2007-2014)

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