KUALA LUMPUR: Attorney General Tommy Thomas has obtained leave from the High Court to initiate committal proceedings against lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah over his media statement in relation to former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak's case.
High Court Judge Datuk Mohd Firuz Jaffril allowed an ex-parte application by Thomas to commence contempt proceedings against Muhammad Shafee.
"The court fixed March 25 for case management," Senior Federal Counsel Shamsul Bolhassan, who represented the AG, told reporters after the case was heard in chambers on Thursday (March 1).
The ex-parte application was filed last month at the High Court Registrar's Office and named Muhammad Shafee as the sole defendant.
In the application, the AG said Muhammad Shafee was an advocate and solicitor representing Najib, who had been charged in the High Court with several offences related to the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal.
He said on Feb 7, 2019, after the court proceedings involving Najib in the High Court, the defendant was interviewed by several journalists outside the courtroom which was recorded by a videographer from Kinitv.com and telecast on KiniTV which is accessible via https://m.kinitv.com/video/70311O8.
Thomas claimed that the defendant knew or ought to have known that the offensive statement he made was contemptuous to the judge and would undermine the administration of justice and public confidence in the judicial system in Malaysia.
He said the defendant knew or ought to have known that the offensive statement would clearly place the trial judge in an embarrassing situation and create a state of uncertainty over the fair and just determination of the criminal case.
He claimed that the words were uttered deliberately and with intent by the defendant in an attempt to pressure and influence the decision in the criminal case.
Thomas contended that the offensive statement, made right after the proceedings involving the accused, had only one meaning and was intended to bring disrepute to the courts and judges.
He said it would undermine the administration of justice and public confidence in the judicial system in Malaysia. – Bernama