MCO violators: Chief Justice urges judges to consider prison overcrowding when sentencing

  • Nation
  • Sunday, 05 Apr 2020

PETALING JAYA: The Chief Justice of Malaya Tan Sri Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat (pic) has urged judges to take into consideration the overcrowding in prisons when sentencing violators of the movement control order (MCO).

In a statement by the Office of the Chief Registrar of the Federal Court on Sunday (April 5), it confirmed that the Office had received a letter from the Prisons Department director-general Datuk Seri Zulkifli Omar on April 2, with regards to the prisons receiving violators of the MCO.

"Under the direction of the Chief Justice of Malaya, the Office have informed all the Judicial Officers that while taking into consideration the provisions of penalties under the existing laws, the issue regarding the risk of the spread of Covid-19 that may potentially be faced by prisons in Malaysia should also be considered in sentencing those who have violated the MCO," it said in a statement on Sunday.

On Saturday (April 4), Zulkifli, in a letter, said that the Prisons Department was concerned that they could become the source of Covid-19 outbreaks, as the health status of the violators of the MCO who were being sent to prison was not known.

He added that social distancing was also “impossible” in prisons due to overcrowding.

Zulkifli had said that 378 people have been sent to prison as of April 1 for violating the MCO.

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