SHAH ALAM: A lawyer and a photographer were involved in an altercation at the Shah Alam High Court prior to the commencement of the murder trial of Cradle Fund CEO Nazrin Hassan.
The media had staked out the entrance to the high court in Shah Alam as early as 7am in anticipation of the high-profile case.
When lawyer S. Suresh arrived at 9am with Cradle Fund chief executive officer Nazrin Hassan’s wife, Samirah Muzzafar, scores of photographers instantly swarmed them to take pictures.
Suresh was seen shouting and pushing his way through the photographers.
“Give way!” Suresh was heard shouting.
It did not take long before emotions ran high and the lawyer was punched in the head by a photographer.
Later, as Suresh entered the courthouse, he attempted to snatch a media tag from an Utusan Malaysia photographer, who retaliated by striking the lawyer in the head with his camera.
As photographers broke up the altercation, expletives were hurled, and Suresh was seen walking up the steps while wiping his forehead.
Utusan Malaysia photographer Zulfadhli Zaki said a police report was lodged at the Shah Alam Section 9 district police headquarters after the hearing yesterday morning.
Zulfadhli claimed that despite the police report and the fight, he and Suresh had made peace when they both met at the police station to lodge the police report.
“I bumped into him at the police station while lodging the report. So we cleared the air,” said Zulfadhli.
Zulfadhli said the scuffle started because Suresh had grabbed his media card, which contained sensitive personal information such as his MyKad info.
“He pushed my camera and I had to prevent the camera from falling, hence the response.
“After that, he grabbed my media tag and I thought he was going to target my camera again,” said Zulfadhli.
Nevertheless, Zulfadhli stressed that they had both buried the hatchet yesterday morning.
Meanwhile, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, who was representing Samirah Muzaffar in the case, said he asked for a police escort after the hearing ended due to the scuffle.
“She was escorted by Suresh and Leonard (lawyer). Shortly after, there was some noise that led to pushing,” he said, adding that he saw a photographer using a camera to hit Suresh’s head before the hearing began.
A statement by media watchdog Gerakan Media Marah (Geramm) said that any attempt to stop the media from carrying out its duties is unacceptable.
Geramm also said that the media shouldn’t provoke or attack anyone, except in an emergency or to protect themselves.