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Corpun file 10492 at www.corpun.com
New Straits Times, Kuala Lumpur, 9 January 2003
Cabinet agrees to gallows, long sentences for child rapists
By Sujatani Poosparajah
Rapists who cause deaths, including child rapists, will face the gallows under the proposed penalties for rapists agreed by Cabinet yesterday. For incestual rape (incest without consent), the punishment is a minimum 15 to 30 years jail and minimum 10 strokes of the rotan.
Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Rais Yatim said today the Cabinet also decided that offenders aged 50 and above were now liable to be whipped under the new amendments.
Those 50 and above were previously spared under the Criminal Procedure Code.
"If a 50-year-old can perform an act of assault or rape or incestual rape, then he should be fit enough to be whipped," Rais said.
Rais said the number of strokes would depend on the certification by a medical officer.
Incestual rape and incest offenders and victims who survive will also be given the opportunity to receive counselling and other additional services by relevant government agencies for rehabilitation.
Rais said that for the first time, incestual rape and incest offenders will be registered under the Registration of Criminals and Undesirable Persons Act 1969.
Under the new amendments, those who fail to report cases of incestual rape, incest or rape, including family members who want to protect offenders, will also be hauled to court and punished with a proposed minimum three years jail sentence.
Rais said that although the Child Act 2001 provided for this offence, it would be for the public prosecutor to determine whether to pursue under the Child Act or to utilise the forthcoming amendments under the new provisions.
"We will be working in tandem with the Child Act," he said.
Rais said for the offence of incest, the Penal Code was amended in 2001 to include a jail term of between six and 20 years and whipping.
He said the consent element in the offence of incest meant less severity of sentencing as compared to incestual rape (without consent).
Rapes currently carry a jail term of not less than five years up to 20 years and whipping.
He said Section 376 of the Penal Code, Section 289 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the Criminal Justice Act and other pertaining instruments relevant to the action will be amended accordingly.
"I am working very fast on this and I have already liaised with the Attorney-General's Chambers to have the draft amendments of these laws out in time for Parliament in the March session.
Rais, who presented his proposal to Cabinet yesterday said he had taken into account the feedback from other departments and Ministries including the Women and Family Development Ministry, Social Welfare Department, the police and the AG's Chambers.
© New Straits Times (M) Berhad
Corpun file 10487 at www.corpun.com
The Star, Kuala Lumpur, 12 January 2003
Laws should protect as well as punish
SEXUAL crimes, often accompanying violence, appear to be rife in parts of the country. Statistically these generally pertain to the different categories of rape and incest.
In recent months the situation has sparked concern in various quarters, including government officials, care givers and public interest groups. Legal penalties for these violations are now accordingly heavier for convicted offenders.
Incest now carries a prison term of between 15 and 30 years and a minimum of 10 strokes of the rotan. A proposed amendment seeks the death penalty for incestuous rape that results in the victim's death, after some initial mulling over capital punishment for this crime.
The recognition of the different categories of these offences is welcome, as are the heavier penalties to be meted out. Rape and incest are often complex enough on their own, with the complexity compounded in cases of incestuous rape.
The new Section 376C of the Penal Code which deals with three categories of rape is due for tabling in Parliament in March. Given that tougher penalties and a more finely honed approach to rape classification are non-sectarian issues, its passage through Parliament can be expected.
Legal provisions, amendments and proposals should be taken as continual works-in-progress at any given time. They are all efforts at meeting society's needs and demands, and subject to modification or replacement as those needs and demands change.
For example, convicted persons above 50 years old have long been exempted from caning on their presumed infirmity due to age. But as Malaysian society has evolved with improvements in health such that many people above 50 now seem sprightly, with some active enough even to commit rape, these offenders may now be liable for the rotan.
Society will continue to evolve, and the laws that serve society will also do so accordingly. The point is to make the laws at any given time match the requirements and expectations of the people of the time.
© 1995-2002 Star Publications (Malaysia) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)
Corpun file 10494 at www.corpun.com
Bernama News Agency, Kuala Lumpur, 12 January 2003
Man Jailed Seven Years For Firearms Possession
ALOR STAR, Jan 12 (Bernama) -- A jobless man was sentenced to seven years jail and seven strokes of the rotan by the Sessions Court here today for illegal possession of a gun and ammunition.
T. Maniam, 44, of Sungai Petani, was jailed seven years and ordered to be given seven strokes of the rotan for possession of a home-made gun on the motorcycle lane at the Jitra toll plaza, Kubang Pasu, at 4.30pm on March 20, 2000. He received another two years' jail for possession of two rounds of ammunition at the same place and time. The sentences are to run concurrently.
The gun possession charge under section 8 of the Firearms (Increased Penalties) Act 1971 carries a maximum 14 years jail and at least six strokes of the rotan while the second charge under section 8(a) of the Arms Act 1960 carries a maximum seven years jail or fine, or both, on conviction.
Judge Ghazali Cha, in finding him guilty, said Maniam, who gave his defence under oath, had failed to cast a doubt on the prosecution's case.
Deputy public prosecutor Rahmatullah Baharudeen prosecuted while Maniam was represented by counsel Simon Murali.
Corpun file 10615 at www.corpun.com
Sarawak Tribune, Kuching, 18 January 2003
Prison executes whipping order on 19 convicts
By Clarence Ting
LIMBANG -- The whipping order imposed by the Magistrate's Court here on 19 prisoners for committing various offences last year was executed at Limbang Central Prison, yesterday.
It is learnt that 17 illegal immigrants were given a stroke of the rotan each while two drug convicts received three strokes each.
Meanwhile three other prisoners, who were each supposedly to receive a stroke of the rotan, had the order waived as they were found unfit to undergo the trauma during the medical examination carried out on them by Divisional Health Officer, Dr Karam Jeet Singh and his assistant, Dr Karam confirmed that two of them were suffering from high blood pressure while the other had cardiovascular disease.
The whipping at the prison here was carried out by Prisons Officers from Miri Central Prison.
Copyright © 1999 Sarawak Press Sdn. Bhd. All rights reserved.
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