AGC once again rejects letter of representation from Rewcastle-Brown over defamation charge

KUALA LUMPUR: The Attorney General's Department (AGC) has once again rejected the letter of representation from Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown (pic) to drop the criminal defamation charge against her over alleged statements made against the Sultanah of Terengganu Sultanah Nur Zahirah through the book "The Sarawak Report - The Inside Story of the 1MDB Expose".

The Attorney General's Department (AGC) informed of the matter through a letter submitted to Messrs. Guok Partnership representing the woman via email on Monday (April 3).

Based on a copy of the letter obtained by the media, the AGC decided that there was sufficient evidence to retain the existing charge against the accused.

The AGC stated that the decision was final and any further letters of representation from the accused would not be entertained unless any new developments warranted a review.

Both Deputy Public Prosecutor Noor Haslinda Che Seman and Rewcastle-Brown’s counsel Guok Ngek Seong confirmed the matter when contacted.

On Jan 25, the AGC rejected Rewcastle-Brown's letter of representation before a second letter was filed on March 8.

The letter was filed following the decision of the High Court here on Oct 31 last year which rejected the defamation suit filed by Sultanah Nur Zahirah against the British journalist over the alleged defamation involving the Terengganu Investment Authority (TIA) in the book.

In the letter of representation, Rewcastle-Brown said High Court had ruled that the paragraph in the book was not defamatory, hence the prosecution would face difficulty in proving the case beyond a reasonable doubt in the criminal case.

On Sept 23, 2021, Rewcastle-Brown was charged in absentia at the Kuala Terengganu Magistrate's Court under Section 500 of the Penal Code, which carried a maximum jail sentence of two years, or a fine, or both, if convicted.

Rewcastle-Brown's application to transfer the case to the High Court here would be heard before Judge K. Muniandy on May 15. - Bernama

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