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Judicial CP - June 2002

New Straits Times, Kuala Lumpur, 18 June 2002

Amnesty for illegals ends at midnight on July 31

By Firdaus Abdullah

KUALA LUMPUR, June 17. -The blanket amnesty offered to over 500,000 illegal immigrants in the country will end at midnight on July 31.

The Government will enforce the Immigration Act 1953 (Amendments 2002), which spells out stiffer penalties for illegally entering the country, or employing or harbouring illegals, on Aug 1.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the amendments to the Act passed by the Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara had received the King's consent.

"In view of the stiffer provisions, including whipping, the Government is advising illegal immigrants to leave Malaysia before Aug 1 because after the law is enforced, we won't be lenient or entertain appeals," he said in a statement today.

He also advised employers to be extra careful and only hire foreign workers with the necessary permits.

To date, about 150,000 illegal immigrants have left the country since the amnesty was announced on March 22.

Under the fresh provisions in the Immigration Act, illegal entry into Malaysia carries a maximum fine of RM10,000 or a jail term not exceeding five years or both and mandatory whipping (not exceeding six strokes).

Employers who hire illegals are liable to fines of between RM10,000 and RM50,000 per employee and a jail term not exceeding one year, while employers who hire more than five illegal immigrants would be liable for mandatory whipping and jail terms extending to a maximum of five years.

Owners or tenants of buildings, houses or premises who allow illegal immigrants to occupy or enter their property will also be subject to the new provisions.

Owners or tenants found guilty of such offences in the first instance would be liable for fines between RM5,000 and RM30,000 and/or a jail term not exceeding a year for each illegal immigrant found on their premises.

For a second or subsequent similar offence, the fine goes up to between RM10,000 and RM60,000 and/or a jail term not exceeding two years for each illegal immigrant.

For those who protect illegal immigrants, the penalties are much stiffer. Those found guilty of protecting more than five illegal immigrants are liable to be fined between RM10,000 and RM50,000, a jail term of between six months to five years and mandatory whipping not exceeding six strokes.

New Straits Times (M) Berhad

blob Follow-up: 10 August 2002 - Seven foreigners to be jailed and caned under amended law

masthead Straits Times, Singapore, 21 June 2002

Stiff penalties soon for addicts

Longer jail term and caning for hard-core drug users

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia has approved a law that provides longer jail terms and whipping for hard-core drug addicts.

The Health Ministry's Parliamentary Secretary S. Sothinathan said that amendments to the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 were necessary as drug addiction was a chronic relapsing disease and that hard-core addicts were the most difficult to rehabilitate.

Under the amendments, hard-core addicts can be jailed from five to seven years and caned up to three times if convicted under Section 10, 15 or 31A of the Act.

'Those who had undergone treatment at the rehabilitation centres twice or had been convicted of using dangerous drugs or failed to submit urine samples twice or had undergone rehabilitation are liable to the sentence,' he said when tabling the Bill at the Dewan Rakyat here on Wednesday.

Currently, drug users can be fined up to RM5,000 (S$2,355) and jailed up to two years.

Convicted traffickers risk mandatory death by hanging.

The Parliamentary Secretary warned that repeat offenders would face prison sentences of up to 13 years and between three and six strokes of the rotan.

He said that in Singapore, addicts caught for the third time were liable to five to seven years in prison and between three and six strokes of the rotan.

For subsequent offences, they were sentenced to between seven and 13 years in prison and were given six to 12 strokes of the rotan.

These penalties were effective in checking the nation's drug menace, he said.

He said the drug information database had a total of 223,123 registered addicts as of December last year.

Of the number, 50.2 per cent were repeat offenders, while 40,000 of them were hard-core addicts.--AP, Bernama

Copyright @ 2002 Singapore Press Holdings. All rights reserved.

masthead The Star, Kuala Lumpur, 21 June 2002

Estate worker wants to be caned instead

KUALA LUMPUR: An estate worker stunned a magistrate's court when he appealed to be caned rather than be fined for having a stolen motorcycle.

L. Ramesh Kumar, 36, pleaded with magistrate Rosli Ahmad after he was jailed 24 months and fined RM3,000 in default of three months' jail for retaining the stolen property at Jalan Sungai Buloh in Kepong on May 12.

"Please, sir, do not fine me as I don't have anyone to pay the fines. I want the rotan," said Ramesh, who had admitted to an alternative charge.

Rosli replied: "It is okay. This time I will fine you and if you come back here again, I will give you the rotan."

At press time, Ramesh failed to pay his fine and was sent to prison to serve his 27 months' jail term. The sentence is to run from the date of arrest on May 12.

1995-2001 Star Publications (Malaysia) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)

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