Jais' raid on Bible Society was illegal, says lawyer


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 08 Jan 2014

PETALING JAYA: The Selangor Islamic Religious Department's (Jais) raid on the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) is illegal because its officers do not have the power to search premises and seize items, says a senior lawyer.

Lawyer Edmund Bon said the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation Among Muslims) Enactment 1988 failed to spell out powers for “authorised” officers to search premises and seize items.

“This means that the raid is illegal if it was carried out under this Enactment.

“Only Section 12 of the Enactment provides the power to investigate and this is to be read with Section 13 and 14,” he said when contacted Wednesday.

However, Bon said neither Sections 13 or 14 empowered any search or seizure of items.

This is contrary to Selangor executive councillor for Islamic Affairs Sallehen Mukhyi, who had said on Monday that the raid was legal and was in accordance with Jais’ standard operating procedure (SOP).

Last Thursday, Jais seized 321 Bibles in Malay and Iban from the BSM office in a raid conducted under the Enactment.

Under Section 11 of the Enactment, all offences and cases shall be deemed to be seizable offences and seizable cases for the purpose of the Criminal Procedure Code.

However, Bon said even if the offence was seizable, the power to search and seize was with the police under Section 56 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

He said the police must also get a search warrant from a Magistrate under Section 56 of the Code before conducting any raids.

Criminal lawyer Amer Hamzah Arshad said the Criminal Procedure Code should be adhered to if there were no provisions in the Enactment that spells out Jais’ authority in searching premises.

“Under the Code, a warrant is needed to search premises. The Code provides for exceptions where searches can be held without warrants but they are limited and usually for drastic measures,” he said.

Lawyer MK Thas said Jais’ SOP could be reviewed with the consensus from all parties involved including religious groups and the state government.

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Join our Telegram channel to get our Evening Alerts and breaking news highlights
   

Next In Nation

PM: SOP relaxations to be announced in two days
Bersatu Youth chief denies asking Syed Saddiq to support PM, only went to meet him as a friend
Umno's Idris Jusoh backs PM, chides Ahmad Zahid's leadership
At least 112 MPs rejected Perikatan, no way PM has majority, claims Anwar
Masidi: Not the right time for social gatherings in Sabah with sporadic Covid-19 infections on the rise
Health DG: Conditional approval granted for Moderna Covid-19 vaccine
Customs seizes RM10mil worth of smuggled steel in Klang
Penang senior federal counsel pleads guilty for accepting bribes
Spotlight on former Perak MB Ahmad Faizal over claim he is now PM's 'special adviser'
Cops: No further action against teacher over alleged rape jokes made in Ain Husniza’s class

Stories You'll Enjoy


Vouchers