MELAKA: A 27-year-old man who escaped the hangman's noose on Monday (Sept 25) vows to stay on the straight and narrow for the rest of his life.
A. Uvaraj, from Bukit Baru, and a 37-year-old friend were acquitted and discharged on three charges of drug trafficking by the High Court in Ayer Keroh.
When met after his release, Uvaraj said he felt that time had stood still for him after more than four years in Sungai Udang prison since his 2019 arrest.
"These were the darkest days of my life, and I will cherish Sept 25 as an auspicious day (in my life).
"I lost my freedom and dignity (for) many months in prison."
Uvaraj, an odd-job worker before his arrest, said the prison had taught him harsh life lessons, and he was remorseful for embarrassing his family.
"I will do my best to stay out of trouble and do not wish to set foot (in prison) again.
"I am also grateful to my two brothers for their constant support while I was in jail," he said.
He hopes to start working as a motorcycle mechanic for a friend before venturing into his own business.
Uvaraj and his friend faced three charges each for trafficking 198g of methamphetamine, 39g of heroin, and 540g of cannabis, all framed under Section 39B(2) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952, which carried the mandatory death penalty upon conviction.
Justice Mohd Abdul Radzi Abdul Hamid ruled that the prosecution failed to prove a prima facie case against the accused.
Based on facts submitted to the court, the drugs were found inside an apartment on Jalan Bukit Baru at about 10pm on April 26, 2019.
He said the drugs were found inside a room in the apartment and inside a locked rack outside the unit, with the keys to the room and the rack inside a car belonging to another person.
“Five people were arrested on April 26, 2019 while Uvaraj was only arrested on May 8, and the arrest raises doubts.
“When the police came to the unit, Uvaraj was not there,” he said.
Counsel Ranjit Singh Sandhu represented Uvaraj.