Selangor exco member Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad has been charged for the third time under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 for not giving a 10-day notice for the Black 505 rally.
This follows a unanimous decision on Thursday where the Court of Appeal said Section 9(5) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA) that criminalises the failure to give notice to be 'constitutional, valid and enforceable'.
Nik Nazmi’s lawyer, Syahredzan Johan, argued that it was not about whether the charge was constitutional or otherwise but rather on whether his client could be charged again after he was acquitted.
“He should similarly be discharged from the third charge because he had already been acquitted the first time. He cannot be acquitted again,” he told reporters at the Petaling Jaya Sessions Court today.
Citing Article 7(2) of the Federal Constitution, Syahredzan (photo) pointed out that a person who has been acquitted could not be tried again for the same offence unless the conviction or acquittal has been set aside by a higher court.
The lawyer also believes that his client could be the first person being charged for the same offence for the third time.
“Even the words are exactly the same, up to the punctuation marks,” he noted.
Asked for the reason why prosecutors were determined to press on with the case, Syahredzan said he would like to think that the prosecution team had its own reasons.
“But it does look like he is the biggest criminal. As if he was the one who stole billions of ringgit or murdered people,” Syahredzan added.
Sessions court judge Adzwanida Affandi fixed the case for second mention and hearing for preliminary objections on Oct 26 and allowed bail at RM1,500 with one surety.
Nik Nazmi later told reporters that the charge was “extraordinary” and “politically-motivated”.
“It should not have happened. It’s obvious that the motive for this is purely political in nature,” he said.
He also believes that the pursuing of the case against him was a waste of resources and money.
“I was supposed to have a programme at the Selangor state secretariat building but I was told at the last minute (to attend today’s case), so I could not make it there.
“Another day has gone, it’s unfortunate. But we will fight. I’m confident that the law is on my side,” he said.
Nik Nazmi (photo), who is PKR Youth chief and Seri Setia assemblyperson, had been charged twice by the Attorney-General' s Chambers for not abiding in giving the 10-day notice required for the rally.
He was acquitted on the two occasions including on Nov 7 last year by the Shah Alam High Court.
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