IPOH: Perak executive council (exco) member Paul Yong Choo Kiong has claimed trial to raping an Indonesian maid.
Yong, who is Tronoh assemblyman, pleaded not guilty when the charges were out under Section 376 of the Penal Code at the Sessions Court here on Friday (Aug 23).
"I understand and deny any wrongdoing," he said before Sessions Court judge Norashima Khalid.
Wearing a grey suit, Yong, 49, had a team of lawyers that included Farhan Sapian, as well as Malim Nawar assemblyman Leong Cheok Keng, Jelutong MP RSN Rayer, and Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh.
According to the charge sheet, Yong had allegedly committed the act in a room at the top floor of his house in Meru Desa Park on July 7, between 8.15pm and 9.15pm.
Deputy public prosecutor Azhar Mokhtar prosecuted.
Apart from Azhar, the prosecuting team also consists of Ainul Wardah Shahidan and Naidatul Athirah Azman.
During the proceeding, Leong asked for the trial to be postponed following a report lodged by Perak state speaker Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham.
On Thursday (Aug 22), Ngeh had lodged a police report, claiming that the man who took the maid to lodge a police report had received RM100,000 and was threatened by a gun-wielding man not to reveal this.
Ramkarpal said if there was basis to the claim, then the charge could be dropped.
"There could be a conspiracy planned to defame Yong that cannot be ignored," he argued.
Azhar, however, objected and said that the report lodged by Ngeh was not to the knowledge of the Attorney General, while instructions have been given to proceed with the trial.
Azhar also requested that Yong not be allowed bail.
However, Judge Norashima set bail at RM15,000 with one surety and Sept 24 for case management.
On July 8, a 23-year-old maid lodged a police report alleging that she was raped by Yong – her employer – at his house in Meru.
Yong, who is in charge of the state Housing, Local Government, Public Transport, Non-Islamic and Village Affairs Committee, has denied any wrongdoing.
Separately, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu has urged Yong to go on leave until his rape trial is completed.