Woman denies exploiting man by forcing him to beg

The accused: Nurul Hidayah at the Sessions Court in Seremban.

SEREMBAN: A 30-year-old woman has claimed trial at the Sessions Court here to a charge of exploiting a 27-year-old man by making him beg for money in public places.

Nurul Hidayah Md Nor, who works as a taxi driver, pleaded not guilty after the charge was read to her before judge Datin Surita Budin yesterday.

The accused allegedly committed the offences between May and Nov 7, 2021 at various locations here and in Senawang.

She was charged under Section 27(c) of the Minor Offences Act punishable under Section 12 of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act. Offenders can be jailed up to 20 years and fined or both, upon conviction.

Deputy public prosecutor Nor Azizah Aling asked the court to impose bail of RM20,000.

“The court should impose a RM20,000 bail as this is a serious offence,” she said.

However, counsel Haresh Mahadevan asked for a low bail, saying that the accused only earned between RM1,500 and RM2,000 a month and also had to provide for a sick father.

“The accused had been very cooperative with the police and had also been remanded for 11 days before being charged today,” he said, adding that the bail should be set between RM5,000 and RM8,000.

Haresh was assisted by Ramzani Idris.

Surita set bail at RM15,000 with one surety. The accused was ordered to report at the nearest police station once a month and to stay away from the victim and his family. She then fixed May 24 for mention.

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