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Shafie fails to challenge MACC action, remanded further
Published on: Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Kota Kinabalu: Warisan Sabah President Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal was remanded another four days in ongoing investigations by the MACC after he failed to challenge the legality of his earlier remand order.

The challenge centred on the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission's (MACC) power to detain people under the current provisions. Judicial commissioner Ismail Brahmin dismissed the review to disallow the MACC to detain people under Section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

"I cannot agree with the submission. I dismiss review and affirm the remand order by the magistrate," he said.

Shafie's legal team had earlier argued that there is no provision under the MACC Act for them to detain suspects when arrested. He said there are provisions stating that a person under arrest should be allowed bail immediately.

"Section 41 of the MACC Act is clear. Once arrested, they may be released on bail.

There is no provision for them to detain the person. The only provision for remand is under Section 49 (4) which can apply if the person released breaks bail conditions," said counsel Hamid Ismail.

"But we cannot make the assumption that MACC can import Section 117 of the CPC which deals with general arrests, in order to detain someone to complete their investigations," he said in court.

Hamid cautioned that detainment was a sensitive issue concerning personal liberties and should be construed with strict adherence to law.

The MACC has been arresting and applying for remand for suspects and witnesses under Section 117 of the CPC regularly.

MACC prosecuting officer Rustam Anip said that the MACC is allowed to use provisions under the CPC in absence of it under the MACC Act and it was within their power to decide on whether to apply for remand or release on bail.

Shafie, a former Umno Vice President, was arrested last Thursday night to facilitate investigations into an alleged RM1.5 billion embezzling case under his former Rural and Regional Development ministry and is currently being detained.

Monday was the last day of his four day remand.

In the ongoing investigation, 13 people have been arrested while MACC looks into some 70 projects under the Rural and Regional Development ministry from 2009 to 2015, which was helmed by Shafie before he was sacked from the Cabinet for criticising the Prime Minister's handling of the 1Malaysia Development Berhad investment firm.

Shafie went on to quit Umno and subsequently started Parti Warisan Sabah with the aim of toppling the state government.

The 12 others who were arrested include Warisan vice-president Datuk Peter Anthony, a Sabah-based construction company owner, a former deputy secretary from the ministry, Warisan Youth chief Datuk Mohd Azis Jamman, Tenom Umno Youth chief Jamawi Jaafar, and Tawau Umno Youth chief Ariffin Kassim, Shafie's younger brother Hamid Apdal, Hamid's 37-year-old son-in-law Manzur Hussein Awal Khan, lahad Datu Assemblyman Datuk Yusof Apdal, Warisan Putatan division secretary Amarjit Singh, Shafie's former private secretary Izhar Idrus and Press secretary Zamri Maulan.

Shafie's lawyer, Martin Tommy, said Shafie had hoped for an earlier release so he would be able to attend the tabling of Budget 2018 this Friday.

"He has fully cooperated with MACC". - Cynthia D Baga and Jo Ann Mool

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