It is high time for the lawmakers and relevant authorities to look into requirements of a remand proceeding particularly cases related less serious offences.
Recent arrest of the 17 students who protested peacefully in front of the Parliament is an example of possible abuse by the relevant authority. It is reported that the prosecuting officer requested for one week remand against the students but is granted 3 days by the Magistrate. The students are said to be investigated under section 124B of the Penal Code and Peaceful Assembly Act 2012. They are now detained at the Jinjang police detention centre.
Parti Gerakan Deputy Youth Chief Andy Yong who is a lawyer said “under section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code (“CPC”), the basis of a remand is due to the investigation could not complete within 24 hours of the arrest and that there are grounds for believing that the accusation or information against (the students) are well founded. Considering the manner of the arrest, I am skeptical that the police is bona fide in carrying out their investigation in accordance to the law.”
Andy added “the police could have allow bail after the statement recorded. They do not require complicated or difficult investigation like those in serious offences, it is absurd even to allow 3 days remand. Not to mention the students are cooperative and unlikely to leave the country and unlike the anti-Bersih group, no violence is caused or threatened by the students”.
“I wonder what did the police record in their investigation diary during the remand proceeding to provide reason of the remand (if there is any). Often the Magistrate is allow such application by the prosecuting officer or deputy public prosecutor instead of acting independently to consider the severity and merits of the case”
In the circumstance by detaining the students, it caused undue stress, anguish and fear not only on them but their family members. I therefore urge the authority to act impartial and release them soonest possible.