KUALA LUMPUR: Two policemen and a “Datuk” businessman, held under a preventive law to help with investigations into online gambling and the Macau scam, failed to show that their detention was done in bad faith, the High Court said today.
Mohd Hairy Mohamad and Muhammad Amin Nur Rashid Mohamad Puad, both corporals, and businessman Zaidi Kanapiah claimed that police detained them to shut
them up from revealing information to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
Judicial Commissioner Aslam Zainuddin said this argument was clearly flawed because the applicants were detained first by the MACC before they were held under the Prevention of Crime Act 1959 (Poca).
“The applicants could have easily ‘spilled the beans’ so to speak, or ‘come clean’ to the MACC while under their custody before police detained them,” he said in his written judgment delivered today after he dismissed their habeas corpus application of Nov 2.
The judge said based on an affidavit, it was abundantly clear that the trio were suspects in the MACC’s investigations and not witnesses as claimed by them.
He said Zaidi was arrested under Section 4(1) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.
Aslam said their detentions were also procedurally proper as all the requirements under Section 4 of Poca had been complied with.
He said the detention was legal and reasons had been given.
“The applicants are suspected to be persons concerned in the organisation and promotion of unlawful gaming,” Aslam.
He said the trio had only been detained at the initial remand stage and the inquiry before the Poca board had not convened to consider the report of the inquiry officer.
The three will remain under police custody until Dec 6 as a magistrate had extended the remand for another 38 days on Oct 30.
Police detained the trio on Oct 14 and obtained a 21-day remand order from a magistrate to investigate their activities under Poca.
In their application, the three said police detained them as they were material witnesses in relation to an investigation into corrupt practices among certain members of the police force in the Macau scam and online gambling.
They have filed an appeal.