Yellow ‘balloon girl’ hopes AG will drop prosecution's appeal

‘Balloon girl’ Bilqis Hijjas at the Majistrate Court, September 23, 2015. ― Picture  by Yusof Mat Isa
‘Balloon girl’ Bilqis Hijjas at the Majistrate Court, September 23, 2015. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, July 23 — Dance producer Bilqis Hijjas has asked the Attorney-General to drop the prosecution’s bid to have her convicted for “insulting behaviour” through the dropping of yellow balloons at a 2015 event attended by ex-prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Bilqis’ lawyer Eric Paulsen confirmed that the request was sent to the AG earlier this month, where they had asked for the prosecution to discontinue its appeal against Bilqis’ second acquittal.

“On July 10, we sent a representation letter to the AG, for him to consider withdrawing the prosecution’s appeal against Bilqis.

“The High Court has now fixed the matter on August 15 pending a decision from the AG,” he told Malay Mail when contacted.

Today was case management of the case involving Bilqis — also known as the “balloon girl” — before High Court judge Datuk Mohd Sofian Abd Razak. Bilqis’ lawyer Zaid Malek attended today.

The case will come up again next month, where the matter will either be resolved or where the appeal hearing would start if the representation is not allowed.

On September 23, 2015, Bilqis was charged with “insulting behaviour” with the purpose of provoking anger that may cause a breach of peace under Section 14 of the Minor Offences Act 1955, which imposes a maximum RM100 fine.

The charge did not specify who was alleged to have been insulted.

She was alleged to have released several yellow balloons printed with the words “Free media,” “Democracy” and “Justice” on August 31, 2015 at around 3.15pm at the Pavilion mall in Kuala Lumpur during the Kuala Lumpur International Arts Festival’s opening ceremony.

Bilqis has been acquitted twice by the Magistrate’s Court in this case — on July 1, 2016 without her defence being called and on November 27, 2017 even after she entered her defence.

After both acquittals, the prosecution had appealed.

The latest appeal on the second acquittal was filed on December 4, 2017.

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