Police action to harass and intimidate me, says Ambiga

Ambiga Sreenevasan says the police have no grounds to investigate her for causing public harm. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, November 10, 2017.

LAWYER Ambiga Sreenevasan today said police investigations that she was “causing public harm” over a statement of defence in a London court case was to harass and intimidate her.

Responding to The Malaysian Insight report earlier today that police were investigating her, the former Bar Council president added this action is a concerted effort by parties linked to claimant in the civil suit in the United Kingdom.

“Legal views have already been expressed as to the inappropriateness of the police action.

“It is difficult to understand how a defence which mentions me, and is taken by a defendant to resist a defamation action filed voluntarily by a Malaysian politician in a London court, (and thus protected by absolute privilege), can constitute a criminal offence in Malaysia,” she said in a statement this evening.

She was referring to the defamation suit filed by Islamist party PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang (claimant) against Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown (defendant).

Ambiga is being investigated by Malaysian police for allegedly providing information to Rewcastle-Brown on senior PAS leaders having received large sums of money from Prime Minister Najib Razak, who is also Umno president.

This was after Rewcastle-Brown had named Ambiga as her source of information for the article she published last year.

Police investigations here began after a report was lodged by Umno Grassroots Movement chairman Zulkarnain Mahdar at the Sri Petaling police station on November 1.

“There is also a lack of appreciation that harassing and intimidating a potential witness is viewed very seriously in any court and would be tantamount to contempt,” Ambiga said in her statement.

Lawyers today said that the police have no legal basis to investigate Ambiga, with some saying the police action was “bizarre and frivolous”.

Lawyer Syahredzan Johan said it was “absurd” for police to carry out an investigation under Section 505(b) and Section 233 of the MCMC Act as this was a civil suit between two parties.

“It’s not a criminal investigation. The so-called ‘source of information’ was by way of an averment in a statement of defence in a civil suit,” he said.

Lawyers for Liberty’s Eric Paulsen had also said this investigation can also amount to the intimidation and harassment of a potential witness. – November 10, 2017.

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  • When the police is seen, rightly or wrongly, to be in cahoots with the party in government to intimidate the very people it was meant to protect, don't question why the people begin to lose faith in the police. Is one person, MO1, that important for the police to defend, even if he is clearly in the wrong, morally, spiritually and legally?

    Posted 6 years ago by Insightful Malaysian · Reply