Powers of A-G absolute, court told

  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 10 Jan 2006

KOTA KINABALU: The Attorney-General’s powers cannot be questioned in any way, the High Court heard. 

Attorney-General’s Chambers deputy head of civil division 1 Datuk Mary Lim Thiam Suan told the court yesterday the Constitution provided exclusive authorisation to the A-G to conduct prosecution. 

She said the Federal Court and Court of Appeal in their earlier rulings had repeatedly affirmed that “the discretion vested in the A-G is unfettered, cannot by challenged and substituted by that of the courts.” 

Lim said this in her arguments against an application by lorry driver David Chang Tai Kim for leave to apply for a judicial review to bring to justice those involved in the fatal shooting of his 20-year-old son Anthony Chang Kim Fook.  

Anthony, 23, was shot dead at about 4.30am on Oct 23 last year outside the Penampang library. Eleven suspects, including a former state minister and his three sons, were detained and later released on police bail. 

David, represented by lawyers V.K. Liew, Ram Singh, Christina Liew and Harban Kaur, was seeking leave to apply for a review on the decision to release on bail the main suspect or suspects for Anthony’s murder and an order of mandamus to enforce the law against them.  

David also sought a court order for the suspects to be detained under Section 259 of the Criminal Procedure Code pending their arraignment before the courts. 

Alternatively, he also sought a review on the prosecutorial discretion in bringing charges against the suspects. Named as respondents in the suit were the Penampang OCPD, the Sabah Police Commissioner and the Attorney-General.  

Describing David’s application as an “emotional plea without any legal basis”, Lim said he was asking the court to look into a criminal matter based on civil law. 

At the hearing before Justice Datuk Sulong Matjarie yesterday, Lim read out an affidavit by Bukit Aman criminal investigations department officer Dep Supt Zulkifly Mohamad that he was directed to take over the probe into Anthony’s shooting by the Deputy Inspector-General of Police on the A-G's request.  

Lim said those not satisfied with any of A-G's decision should seek remedy elsewhere and not the court. 

Hearing continues tomorrow.  

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