Senior lawyer Karpal Singh has been fined RM4,000 for sedition by the Kuala Lumpur High Court, thereby losing his eligibility to represent the parliamentary constituency of Bukit Gelugor.
The prosecution had pressed for a custodial sentence in submitting at the mitigation stage of the case this morning.
Justice Azman Abdullah, however, said he had looked at the facts of the case and considered the public interest, as well as the special circumstances of Karpal’s health condition.
On Feb 21, he had found Karpal guilty of sedition over the remark that action can be taken against the Perak sultan for removing Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin as menteri besar during the 2009 imbroglio in the state assembly.
Section 4 of the Sedition Act provides for a maximum fine of RM5,000 or a maximum jail term of three years, or both.
Observers from Britain and the US and Lawasia were in court today, alongside former UN special rapporteur Param Cumaraswamy, Bar Council chairperson Christopher Leong, vice-chairperson Steven Thiru and former chairperson Cyrus Das.
PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim, vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar, treasurer William Leong and Tamrin Ghafar were among those from Pakatan Rakyat.
PAS deputy president Mohamad Sabu and secretary-general Mustafa Ali; and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and veteran leader Lim Kit Siang were also present.
A huge crowd of supporters had gathered this morning at the entrance to the Kuala Lumpur court complex in Jalan Duta.