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Nov

Update from Court: Zunar filed challenge to nine sedition charges

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Challange Sedition Act 6 Nov 2015

Note form Zunar: Update on my case: I filed challenge to nine sedition charges Today 6 November 2015, my case was called up for case management. But I instead filed an application at the Sessions Court in Kuala Lumpur to challenge the nine charges under the Sedition Act 1948 The application is now fixed for submissions and hearing on 8 December and decision of the application on 15 December.

In the meanwhile, no trial dates (of the actual sedition case) have been fixed pending his application. So my next court appearance is on 8 December and 15 December Zunar Political cartoonist 6 Nov 2015 Below is note from my Lawyer: Dear all, Today 6 November, Zunar’s case was called up for case management. We have filed an application at the Sessions Court to have constitutional questions to be referred to the High Court. The trial Sessions Court does not have jurisdiction to hear such matters.

The questions are as follows:

1 Whether section 3(3) of the Sedition Act 1948 is unconstitutional as it states that the “intention” of the maker “shall be deemed to be irrelevant” when making the seditious statement;

2 Whether the Sedition Act unlawfully criminalises peaceful expression of free speech, thus unconstitutional;

3 The recent Federal Court case in PP v Azmi Sharom misread the Constitution and should be reconsidered. Under Article 10(2), “Parliament may by law impose” restrictions on fundamental rights. Therefore as the Sedition Act pre-dates the Constitution, it cannot be read into Article 10 (2) to restrict freedom of speech. The application is now fixed for submissions and hearing on 8 December and decision of the application on 15 December.

In the meanwhile, no trial dates (of the actual sedition case) have been fixed pending his application.

Eric Paulsen


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