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KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 23 ― Activist Fahmi Reza announced today that the police are now investigating him over a recent sketch he drew of the prime minister in clown makeup, but said he does not fear the actions he may face for the alleged offence.
The graphic designer said the police have officially begun investigations, almost three weeks after they first warned him that they were monitoring the Twitter account he used to post the sketch.
“Now I have been called by the police to record a statement to help in investigations in relation to the clown face poster drawing.
“Because I am now on duty abroad, I can only take the return flight to KL this weekend. Therefore I have fixed an appointment with the police to go to the Dang Wangi police headquarters on Sunday 4pm to give my statement,” he wrote in a lengthy Facebook post this afternoon.
He suggested two possible outcomes from his appearance at the police station ― the police may arrest him after recording his statement, or may allow him to return home.
“Which action will be taken by the police? I do not know. What I know is, I am prepared to continue fighting to defend our right and freedom to criticise the corrupt ones in power, and I am not afraid to face any possibilities because I know all of you will not let me fight alone,” he said in the post which has garnered more than 1,100 Facebook likes at the time of writing.
Fahmi said the police probe against him is under Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 and Section 504 of the Penal Code.
A conviction under Section 233 for the offence of improper use of network facilities or network service will result in a maximum RM50,000 ringgit fine or a maximum one-year jail term or both, and a further RM1,000 fine for each day of the continuation of the offence after conviction.
A conviction under Section 504 for the offence of intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of peace is punishable with a maximum two-year jail term or fine or both.
In the same post, Fahmi listed down the chronology of events, beginning with his January 31 posting of the “clown face” poster on social media sites Facebook, Instagram and Twitter ― a move he said was meant to criticise corruption.
He said the police warned him on the same day that his Twitter account was being monitored, adding that Mohd Ali Baharom or “Ali Tinju” and the Red Shirts group had on February 1 lodged a police report over the poster allegedly deemed to be “an insult to the PM that can cause public anger and can be seditious”.
Fahmi said he had written an open letter on February 2 to the police to warn them against taking hasty actions by arresting him, which he said would only cause more rebels to rise up.
The police did not take action or make any arrests until the initiation of the probe now, he said.