Court Decides to Let Youth in Low Yat Plaza Phone Theft Case Walk Free
A youth, who was charged for stealing a mobile phone that triggered a riot outside Low Yat Plaza in 2015, was recently acquitted by the Court of Appeal on technical grounds on March 1.
A three-man panel comprising Justices Mohtarudin Baki, Yaacob Md Sam and Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil announced that there was a serious misdirection of law by the magistrate in imposing the four months’ imprisonment and RM1,000 fine on Shahrul Anuar Abdul Aziz, now 25, which therefore would be tantamount to a miscarriage of justice, The Star reported.
Shahrul, who is now a student at a tahfiz school in Bukit Beruntung, Rawang, attended the court proceedings today in a white jubah and turban.
“The magistrate, in his notes of evidence, had stated that the prosecution had prima facie to call the accused to enter his defence, but in the grounds of judgment, it was stated that the accused was guilty of the offence, and must enter his defence,” said Mohtarudin.
“The accused had rebutted the prosecution’s case to create a reasonable doubt. Therefore, the appeal against the sentence is allowed and the accused, acquitted. The prosecution’s appeal is dismissed.”
“If you have done it, you should repent and if you did not, it’s a test from God, (Kalau awak buat taubat, kalau tak buat ini dugaan Allah)” Mohtarudin told Shahrul.
Mohtarudin said the prosecution’s cross-appeal against inadequacy of jail sentence was also nullified since Shahrul Anuar’s appeal had been allowed.
Shahrul was represented by lawyer Shaharudin Ali while deputy public prosecutor Tengku Intan Suraya Tengku Ismail prosecuted, Malaysiakini reported.
On May 24, 2016, Shahrul was found guilty by the magistrate’s court and was sentenced to four months in jail and fined RM1,000 for stealing a Lenovo S860 mobile phone worth RM800, which was under the care of shopkeeper See Ming Ho at Techasia Boutique, Low Yat Plaza in Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur.
The offence was reportedly committed on July 11, 2015. His action caused a much-publicised riot outside the mall, which saw Malay NGOs giving it a racial twist, crying discrimination and cheating by traders.
Shahrul’s appeal against his conviction and sentence was dismissed by the High Court on April 5, 2017. High Court Judicial Commissioner Ab Karim Ab Rahman ruled that the magistrate did not make any error in finding Shahrul Anuar guilty of stealing the phone, Free Malaysia Today reported.
Shahrul Anuar’s lawyer Datuk Shaharudin Ali told the court that his client had nothing to do with the purported commotion at Low Yat Plaza, adding that the incident was created by a different person and his client was caught in between.
He argued that the magistrate was prejudiced that Shahrul was guilty of the offence and ordered him to enter his defence. Sharudin, who was assisted by Mohd Khairul Azam Abdul Aziz, also said this was because the magistrate had concluded that Shahrul Anuar was guilty of the offence even before he had entered his defence, according to the New Straits Times.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Tengku Intan Suraya Tengku Ismail submitted that there was overwhelming evidence to secure Shahrul Anuar’s conviction adding that there was no miscarriage of justice against him.
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Also read: Grab Driver Gets Horribly Beaten Up After Returning Passenger’s Phone
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