Khairuddin (left) and Chang.
PETALING JAYA: The purpose of lodging a report is to enable the police or other agencies to start investigations into complaints contained in it, said Matthias Chang, the lawyer of former Batu Kawan Umno vice-chief Datuk Seri Khairuddin Abu Hassan.
He added that lodging police reports could not amount to sabotage like he and Khairuddin are accused of.
Chang, who issued a press release Wednesday on his website futurefastforward.com added that the Deputy Public Prosecutor for the case, Masri Mohd Daud and his colleagues in court seemed focused on the gravity of the charge of sabotage, and the use of the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosma).
On Monday, Khairuddin and Chang were charged under Section 124L of the Penal Code for attempting to sabotage the country’s banking and financial systems. Both pleaded not guilty to the charge.
As for why Sosma is being used even though Khairuddin and Chang were charged with an offence under the Penal Code, legal expert Syahredzan Johan said Sosma provisions can be used as Khairuddin and Chang committed a security offence.
"Security offences under Sosma are defined as offences which fall under Part 6 of the Penal Code. Part 6 provides for offences against the state Chang and Khairuddin's charge of sabotage falls under Part 6 and therefore the authorities can invoke Sosma and invoke it against the suspects," said Syahredzan.
He added that the powers given to the prosecution under Sosma are much wider than the powers provided for under the Criminal Procedure Code.
"When it comes to procedure during trial, if Sosma is invoked the person who is charged for the security offence will not be able to obtain bail. Additionally, anything seized during a raid is admissible during trial as evidence. There are also provisions that allow for secret witnesses where the identity of the witness is protected. Even the lawyer for the accused will not know who the witness is," said Syahredzan.
On Tuesday, Attorney-General Tan Sri Apandi Ali said the use of security laws against Khairuddin and Chang is not an abuse of power.
Apandi said Sosma covered security offences but was not limited to terrorism and terrorists and that its use in the case has been questioned by certain parties as being an abuse of government powers, he said, referring to accusations made by former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and six former Cabinet members.