Loyal Followers

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Utter Tyranny of Detention Without Trial - a very true and recent story

Most of you may have read that Azean Irdawaty's son, Benjy, was recently arrested for apparently in possession of 800grams of cocaine, and 140grams of methamphetamine. If true, that would make him a presumed trafficker under our law. The death sentence would be staring at his face.

However, they only charged him with being in possession of 0.24grams of metaphetamine. What happened to the 800 grams of cocaine? And 139.76 grams of metaphetamine which he supposedly have?

To top it up, today, the Star reported that the "powder" found was not cocaine after all!

After bail was granted, he was re-arrested under the Dangerous Drugs (Special Preventive Measures) Act 1985. This Act is the drug version of the ISA. It allows detention without trial.

In addition, Amer Hamzah, his lawyer, was manhandled by the police. Lawyers are planning a protest walk tomorrow.

Read Benjy's story as told by his sister, Elza.

On March 11th, he was arrested at his apartment's parking lot in Segambut. Police brought him to an apartment he rented in Kepong, and after entering, claimed that in that residence, he possessed 800grams of cocaine, and 140grams of methamphetamine, and accused him of processing and trafficking, putting him under the risk of being charged under Section 39B, which carries the death penalty.

On March 12th he was remanded for 7 days. When my parents inquired if we can engage a lawyer, the Investigation Officer told us "No need".

On March 17th, after our family waited more than an hour, we were allowed to see him for the very first time, under supervision.

Again my mother asked if we should get him a lawyer, again the I.O advised against it, claiming "Lawyer tak boleh buat apa-apa sekarang. Buang duit je. (Lawyer can't do anything now. It's simply a waste of money)."

On March 18th, his remand was extended another 7 days. The magistrate inquired why there was no lawyer present for him, and whether he was made aware he had the right to a counsel of his choice. He replied "No." Therefore, he requested for one, and only nine hours later, did the I.O call to inform my mother, who promptly engaged Amer Hamzah Arshad. But the very next day, the police used their Executive authority under Section 28A that vetoed his right to a counsel. All requests made by our lawyer to visit him was denied.

Only after we complained to SUHAKAM, did the police allow Amer to visit him.

On the last day of his remand. After the investigations were concluded. For only 15 minutes.

On March 25th, he was brought to court, and charged under Section 12(2) for possession of 0.24grams of metaphetamin in his Segambut residence. Nothing the police claimed they found in the Kepong residence, the cocaine and shabu that was "already packaged to be distributed" or the so called "cocaine processing mini-lab" was brought to court.

Because there WAS none.

He was released on bail. A trial date was set. He was so close to being free, and seeing his 4 year old son again.

But as he was signing the papers of his release, the Plainclothes were outside waiting.

Not two steps after he came out of the bail department, without any explanation, they re-arrested him. Amer was restrained from protecting him, and only after Amer repeatedly asked them to show their I.D, did they do so. Still, no explanation was given to the family. We were merely told to go to the Headquarters and speak to Inspector Kang. The same guy who claimed my brother possessed the cocaine they NEVER found.

He never saw us, he was "in a meeting." He wasn't too occupied to give the press a statement, but was unavailable to see us.

We were told by the new I.O for this case, and the DSP (the guy who signed the papers denying my brother the right to a counsel) that they are detaining him for 60 days under the Special Preventive Measures Act (LPK), after which, they could further detain him for 2 years if found guilty.

Guilty according to THEM. For under this act, it is a detention without trial, like the Internal Security Act. Any information gathered from "witnesses" and "investigations" will never be disclosed to him or his lawyer, or the court. He will also not be able to defend himself against any allegations. Under this act, he will never have his day in court.

On March 25th, my brother, Ben, was denied his Constitutional rights.

For 2 weeks, our family went through hell. Sleepless nights, press waiting outside our door, Ben had asthma attacks after the police delayed themselves in acquiring the requested medication for 3 days, Mama, who is a cancer patient herself, suffered chest pains and lost her voice.

We felt it was all worth it, for we would be able to have him back.

But now, a new nightmare has begun.

Whether or not Ben is guilty, should not be for the Police to decide. If they HAD the evidence to strengthen their warrant for re-arrest, why was it not brought to court? Why is Ben not given a chance to defend himself? How can we ever know the authenticity of these so called witnesses and their statements? If there were ANY to begin with?

Under this act, I could simply be caught for any crimes of drug offences the police accuse me of, because they can claim they have enough information (even if they have absolutely nothing) and detain me. For 60 days, for 2 years, and even EXTEND it after.

Acts like this and the ISA are licenses for ARBITRARY arrest and detention. Anytime. Anywhere. Anybody.

My family and Amer will not back down. We will fight for Ben's right. We will speak up for all of those who were silenced before us, who will be silenced hereafter.

But we seek your help. In any way at all, help us fight this. Re-post this, write on your blogs, write to your local representative, to our newspapers, and together we shall use our voice, our art, our space, to stand up not just for Ben, but for all our rights.

Liberty is a Constitutional right. It's time to get it back.

I have said it many times and I will say it again. Detention without trial is inhuman, unjust and is an affront to civil society. It causes more damage than the damage which it is designed to avert.

And it breeds abuse. And laziness on the part of our authorities. Why bother to investigate when the so caled "bad guys" could be detained without trial?

The above story is but ONE of the thousands of untold stories about detention without trials.

It is but ONE of the agony, anguish and anger which is felt about this utterly uncivilised affront to fundamental liberties.

Do you all want this to happen to you or one of your family members?


Anonymous said...

the best way to cover up inefficiencies in the police farce..

hari said...

It's worst with execution without trial. The police and our mainstream media are very good at it. it's always PENJENAYAH di tembak mati or PENJENAYAH dijumpai mati dalam tahanan. not even suspect. no arrest, no evidence, no proof, no trial, no conviction. just a statement from the police. adds new meaning to the phrase "police state".

edmund said...

Wht is our so called Pakatan "Rakyat" doing about this shit? Instead of talking about 1 Isreal and 1 Malaysia and the other bullshit, look in screwed up laws and amend it. Most of the boys in blue are form 3 drop outs, i wonder how suddenly they more up the ranks and claim to hv dip, degrees and what not?? Have the decency to debate real issues in parliment, we don't care who eniticed who to jump boats and betray the voters. We will know who did all that when they do it and that is the end of their political career. So instead of playing childish games, look into making this country a better place to live in.

Anonymous said...

Welcome to Boleh land,,, This is what the mamak kutty thought them to do,, so dont blame idiots,, the mamak made them fools. we had a great country all setup by the British,, we had good and law abiding Govt staff, good police dept run by true Malaysian, trained by strict British statesmen.. Mamak came by tongkang and dismantle all that,, he brought in Coconut Law from Kerala.
Sorry thats Boleh land,, mamak style. He screwed up the Judges,,
He a Makak tongkang told the judges how to run the coconut courts,,, Pariah Mamak Pendatang juga.. Hapus kan BN,, Janji and do it. Lets all install back the good image of Malaysia.. put UMNO in the coffin and C4 that burial ground.

Anonymous said...

I hate to say this but the majority of the registered Malaysian voters voted for the ISA until one of their family members get arrested under the ISA. Just ask Benji's family?

BN will never and I mean NEVER repeal this law. It is their access to power. The only way for the act to be repealed is to vote them out.

Let us see what happens in Hulu Selangor. Are Malaysians ready for change?

Anonymous said...

rule of law is dead in malaysia......the farking police need to be taught a lesson.....m.farkers hassling the very people who pay their salaries....niamah....

vinnan said...

Do the Melayus now understand why that MF Ibrahim Ali and his PERKOSA bastards the racial supremacist subcontractor of UMNO want the ISA to continue.
Wake uplah orang Melayu before the non-Malays become so oppressed by Barisan Najis that they cannot help the Melayus see justice.

To Edmund,

This Benjy issue has nothing to do with PR. Since you seem to be lost, let me fill you in. When was the last time a drug or illegal betting busted in Malaysia. Think about it.
What can PR do about the ISA-like laws when the majority of the Malays who keep UMNO in power WANT the ISA-like laws?

tupingera said...

I agree with anon 15:55, bila dah kena batang hidung baru nak berbunyi kalau tidak, bangga jadi artis genre bodek.

PRAY,IT WORKS. joe's blog said...

A monster has grown out of the police in the 50 years. It is now a law onto itself. Now may be a bit too late to rein it in.

Anonymous said...

Agree with anon 15:15 & tupingera..

I can still remember watching Azean Irdawaty gives support to BN on TV during previous GE...

However I do feel bad to what is happening now to her family...may be it is time for her to realize what kind of government she has chosen thus far...

kalau tak nampak jugak...tak dapek den nak menolong..

camcamni said...

edmund is notti to blame on PR. PR had tried to repeal ISA but how can they do so when they are not having the majority in Parliament? I hope Azean will come to her senses and for once....come out in the open and give her support to PR and work together to tell BN that they and their kuncos (men In blue0 will be taught a lesson come the Hulu Selangor By-Election and of course the GE 13. Puan Azean....pls wake up and show Bn we rakyat sudah tak boleh tahan anymore under the Bn kuncos (Men In Blue)....Rise up and March Along with PR towards Putrajaya come GE 13...lets do it!!!

The Observer said...

Its all words but no change, that is the BN govermen. So lets wake up, shake up and bring about the change.

donplaypuks® said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
donplaypuks® said...


It's time the lawyers and the Bar Council came out with a sustained nationwide assault for the repeal of any legislation that has a clause which blocks judicial review and tests of reasonbleness from being applied vis-a-vis personal freedom, habeas corpus, right of immediate access to legal representation, arbitary remand and banishment etc.

Even where terrorism is contended by the police, they must still provide some evidence to the judge. 'Take my word for it" is not acceptable in the 21st century where on average we trust our cops as much as we would entrust Dracula with Chairmanship of the blood bank!

The thrust should be on the Unconstitutionality of such one-sided laws which may and are open to abuse by the Executive and Police!

We are all of 1 race, the Human Race

Anonymous said...

I don't understand WHAT IS THE MOTIVE for the police to keep arresting and wanting to detain Benji? Why?

saiful said...

Why are the authorities so keen on putting him in detention?

Is the police targeting him for something else?

Anonymous said...

Detention Without Trial
This is a draconian law. It's used under disguise for many reasons aprt from political, the police use it as a last weapon when all fails in their favour.
Wake up all citizens of Malaysia. Bangun semua rakyat Malaysia sebelum terlambat. Change the govt. Tukar Kerajaan BN. Mereka lah yang buat ISA dan sayang sangat undang-undang ini. Sila daftar sebagai pengundi hari ini. Bawa suku sakat kamu untuk berdaftar dan pastikan mereka UNDI PAKATAN RAKYAT.

katztales said...


Anonymous said...

the bad guys are getter smarter and more violent and crazy.
the pohleez seems to be getting dumber and more arrogant despite their incompetence - can we really rely on them to gather enough evidence to catch the bad guys?
their forte is hauling in people standing still and just holding candles geezzzz.
heck, are they themselves the bad guys even?

having said that, let's not fault-find cos we are alllll victims of a system that is collapsing!

let us close ranks and work together instead - lawyers and the police are on the same side for goodness sake! do not fight each other but instead help each other to fight the bad guys duhhhh.

how many of you lawyers out there have a parent or two who was in the force during the good ole days when they wear the uniform with pride and honour? Is there no way to bring back that nobility? Is what is taught in police-school now different from what was taught those early days?

And you lawyers should realise that the paramount role you play is as peace-makers and not hired-guns!

How can peace-makers not be able to work together with the peace-keepers? May i ask what they teach you in law-school too?


this is the most ugly part of law!

people must stand up now!

where is the basic law and protection????

all malaysians must be informed of their right!!!Send this article to all malaysians and USA President and UK PM, Australian PM to alert them on how ugly the act!

semuanya OK kot said...

There are periodic well-publicised operations on drugs, gambling, prostitution, etc. Whether this in any way inconveniences the operators is another matter.

Mat Cendana said...

Art, I had based my latest post on this issue Detention Without “The Trial” – Pink Floyd

eiling lim said...

But what happened to the 800 grams of cocaine? And 139.76 grams of metaphetamine which he supposedly have? Was he accused of possessing them or was it a mistake?

art harun said...


nobody knows! My suspect is, there was never 800 gm of cocaine and whatever hundred gm of the other stuff to begin with! Only 0.24gm!

Go figure.

淑俊銘松 said...

thank you for you to make me learn more,thank you∩0∩

Mahendran said...

My heart goes out to Benjy and his family truly.Laws like ISA took away many peoples' lives.Detention without trial is nothing but "guilty until proven innocent".Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty?Whatever happened to the belief that justice was blind and it served every man irregardless of race,religion and social status?The police must be made accountable for this heinous act.Benjy is a fellow malaysian and I will stand by him to fight this injustice.We all must.

Anonymous said...

Sunday, April 04, 2010
The Sorrowful Mystery of Mahathir Mohamed - By George Soros


Subject: The corruption of Mahathir: published by Bangkok Post

".........The corruption of Mahathir: SOROS' REPLY TO MAHATHIR - Adapted
from Bangkok Post (Not published locally)........."

Peter @ Enviroman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rob said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rob said...

This is a close-up description of detention without trial including police actions.

I encourage all Malaysian to read Syed Husin's first hand account on ISA. It brought tears to my eyes and then anger. Even after reading it for the third time. It is totally barbaric and uncivilized.


Totally against any decent human values.

If you are one of the unregistered voter or know anyone who has yet to register please do so as soon as possible.

The dirty tricks for GE13 have begun ...

Gila kah said...

so the BN govt is putting Benjy in ISA because Benjy will topple BN and a threat that must be eliminated?

have you gone nuts Art?

art harun said...

Mr/Ms Gila Kah,

Quite to the contrary, I think you are the one who is going nuts. LOL!!!

Gila kah said...



by the way, i think its good for him to be sent to ISA for 2 years rather than be found guilty of having 800g of cocaine and be HANGED TO DEATH!!!

Choose death of life? Thank God Police chose LIFE for him.

art harun said...

Gila kah,

First of all, it's not about choosing between 2 years of detention or death.

It is about the right to be heard or the right to defend himself.

On the BN putting Benjy in because he might topple the BN, I have nothing to say. It's not me who say that. It's you. Frankly, I fail to see why you had said that.

Anonymous said...

'It is about the right to be heard or the right to defend himself'.

Gila kah?....I think you need a dictionary and Art, perhaps you need to translate this statement. Apparently, dia ni tak faham.

abdooss said...

Dear Gila Kah,
The proofs that can send Benjy to the gallows are non-existent. Because they can't sentence him that way, they sent him away, without trial. Even if, your/our relative is a criminal, wouldn't you/we like to see him tried in a just manner? No chance here. No such luck.