Hisham Rais escapes prison time, fined RM5,000 for sedition conviction

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Source: The Malay Mail Online

Activist Hishamuddin Rais arrives at the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya, May 16, 2016. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

Activist Hishamuddin Rais arrives at the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya, May 16, 2016. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

PUTRAJAYA, May 16 ― The Court of Appeal today overturned the previous High Court’s decision in sentencing activist Hishamuddin Rais to nine months in prison for sedition.

The three-panel judge led by Datuk Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat upheld an earlier Sessions Court’s decision to slap Hishamuddin with a RM5,000 fine.

“This is an unanimous decision, we find no reason to dismiss the appeal on the conviction,” Judge Tengku Maimun said in the courtroom.

“(But) we find no reason to disturb the Sessions Court’s decision on the sentence. The Sessions Court applied correct sentencing… the sentence of nine months set aside.”

Outside the courtroom, Hishamuddin thanked his lawyers and relatives for helping him throughout the ordeal.

“The court just now has proven that my speech did not need to land me jail time,” he said to his supporters who chanted “Hidup rakyat”.

His lawyers, Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan and Syahredzan Johan, added they were happy with the decision.

On January 9 last year, the KL Sessions Court found Hishamuddin guilty of sedition for his 2013 speech and fined him RM5,000 in default of six months’ jail.

Judge Azman Mustapha, who took more than an hour to decide on the sentencing, said then that inciting the public to topple the government is a “serious offence”.

In his May 13 remarks, Hishamuddin and several other speakers had allegedly incited the public to overthrow the government through street protests during a forum shortly after the May 5 general election which saw Barisan Nasional (BN) retain power narrowly.

In January this year, the High Court sentenced Hishamuddin nine months in jail for sedition after allowing the prosecution’s appeal for a more deterrent sentence than the RM5,000 fine.

 


Kes hasutan: Hisham Rais terlepas hukuman penjara 9 bulan
Sumber: The Malay Mail Online

Aktivis lantang Hishamuddin Rais dituduh menghasut rakyat menukar kerajaan dengan cara tidak sah dalam ucapannya bagi membantah pilihan raya umum 2013. — Foto oleh Yusof Mat Isa

Aktivis lantang Hishamuddin Rais dituduh menghasut rakyat menukar kerajaan dengan cara tidak sah dalam ucapannya bagi membantah pilihan raya umum 2013. — Foto oleh Yusof Mat Isa

PUTRAJAYA, 16 Mei — Mahkamah Rayuan hari ini mengetepikan hukuman penjara sembilan bulan yang dikenakan oleh Mahkamah Tinggi terhadap aktivis sosial Hishamuddin Rais atas kesalahan hasutan, tiga tahun lepas.

Sebaliknya, panel tiga hakim mengekalkan semula keputusan Mahkamah Sesyen mengenakan denda RM5,000 terhadap Hishamuddin atas kesalahan mengeluarkan kenyataan berbaur hasutan dalam satu ceramah pada 2013.

Panel diketuai Datuk Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat membuat keputusan itu selepas membenarkan rayuan Hishamuddin untuk mengetepikan keputusan Mahkamah Tinggi menggantikan hukuman denda RM5,000 dengan hukuman penjara sembilan bulan.

Pada 15 Januari lepas, Mahkamah Tinggi telah membuat keputusan itu selepas membenarkan rayuan pihak pendakwaan untuk hukuman yang lebih berat.

Bagaimanapun, panel, yang turut disertai Hakim Datuk Ahmadi Asnawi dan Datuk Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil, menolak rayuan Hishamuddin, 65, terhadap sabitannya.

Keputusan panel itu disambut dengan sorakan oleh banyak penyokong yang hadir di mahkamah.

Dalam penghakiman terhadap sabitan, Tengku Maimun berkata selepas meneliti rekod, mahkamah mendapati tiada alasan untuk mengganggu keputusan Mahkamah Sesyen kerana ucapannya mempunyai kecenderungan hasutan.

Dalam membenarkan rayuan terhadap hukuman penjara, Tengku Maimun berkata Mahkamah Sesyen telah menggunakan prinsip undang-undang dengan betul dalam mengenakan hukuman denda terhadapnya.

Dalam prosiding hari ini, Hishamuddin diwakili peguam Datuk S Ambiga dan Syahredzan Johan manakala timbalan pendakwa raya Mohd Abazafree Mohd Abas bertindak bagi pihak pendakwaan.

Pada 9 Januari tahun lepas, Hishamuddin didenda RM5,000 atau enam bulan penjara setelah didapati bersalah oleh Mahkamah Sesyen atas tuduhan mengeluarkan kenyataan berbaur hasutan bagi mengguling kerajaan menerusi demonstrasi jalanan dalam satu ceramah.

Dia didakwa menyatakan demikian ketika berceramah di Dewan Perhimpunan Cina Kuala Lumpur dan Selangor di No 1, Jalan Maharajalela, Kuala Lumpur antara pukul 8.55 malam dan 11.15 malam, 13 Mei 2013. — Bernama