AG discontinues criminal proceedings against LTTE 12
Published: 3:36 pm | Modified: 7:54 pm
Attorney-General Tommy Thomas has exercised his constitutional powers to discontinue proceedings against 12 individuals on trial for alleged links to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) with immediate effect.
In an 11-page statement, Thomas said the common thread among all of them was that they simply had photos of slain LTTE leaders such as Velupillai Prabhakaran in their phones or Facebook accounts.
“If such conduct can constitute a criminal offence, it would bring the law into disrepute,” he said in a statement this afternoon.
“But even if there were elements of a ‘terrorist act’ on the part of all or any of the 12 LTTE accused by possessing, distributing or displaying such photos or Prabhakaran, it would be impossible for the prosecution to establish that they do not fall within the excluded category of Section 130B(4) of the Penal Code in that they merely constitute ‘advocacy, protest or dissent’,” he added.
DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang welcomed the decision, saying that he is looking forward to the release of Negri Sembilan state assemblyperson for Seremban Jaya P Gunasekaran, Malacca state exco G Saminathan and other DAP members, who were among those detained.
“While welcoming their release, DAP reiterates its condemnation of terrorism in any form and reaffirms its commitment to effect political change through peaceful, non-violent and democratic means and to eschew any resort to any violence or any form of terrorism,” he said in a statement.
Penang Deputy Chief Minister II P Ramasamy described the decision as “great news” and thanked Thomas.
“The best present to the 12 detained on allegations of links to a dead and defunct organisation.
“We have been saying all along the 12 were detained on false allegations. The whole charade of terrorist charges is nothing but trumped up.
“I hope the charges are withdrawn as soon as possible,” he told Malaysiakini.
DAP lawmaker Charles Santiago also expressed his gratitude to Thomas and reiterated his call for Sosma to be repealed.
“Govt must revoke the draconian law immediately. All Sosma detainees must be released and if needed charged under the Penal Code,” he told Malaysiakini.
Human Resources Minister M Kulasegaran said this is the decision the people have been waiting for.
“A momentous point in history and the decision the people have been waiting for. Let’s move on and hope for better changes to come about,” he tweeted.
PSM deputy chairperson S Arutchelvan said Thomas’ decision showed that the latter and not the deep state was in charge.
“From day one, this arrest was a farce. The AG’s decision puts on record that he is in charge and not the deep state,” he told Malaysiakini.