KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 15 — Five men sentenced to imprisonment, fine and caning for attempted gay sex won a stay of execution pending their appeal to the Shah Alam Shariah High Court, a lawyer said today.
High Court Judge Mohamad Asri Mohamad Tahir granted the stay today to the five who have been in custody since last Friday.
He imposed a RM4,000 bail for each with two sureties.
“We’re now in the process of obtaining the grounds of judgement and notes of evidence from the Court to proceed with the necessary steps and meanwhile we are working on getting the accused out of prison,” said lawyer Nurul Ain Kamaruddin.
“We have already sent in a request to appeal the judgement meted by the court’s and now we will work on getting the bails posted.”
The five were convicted under Sections 52 and 28 of the Selangor Syariah Criminal Offences Enactment 1995 after being charged with attempting to conduct sexual relations with one or more men in an apartment at Bandar Baru Bangi, around 9.30pm on November 9 last year.
Four of the men aged 27 to 37 were fined RM4,800, six months imprisonment and six strokes of the cane. Another 42-year old man was sentenced to a jail term of seven months, fined RM4,900, and six strokes of the cane.
The five are appealing the convictions with the support of NGO’s Pelangi Campaign and Justice for Sisters.
“Bail will be settled today I believe and upon instructions given to the prison we hope to get them released by today or tomorrow,” said S. Thilaga one of the founders of Justice for Sisters.
“We want to speed this process up so they won’t have to spend another weekend in prison.”
Yesterday gay rights activist Numan Afifi told Malay Mail they are planning their next course of action and one of the suggestions was to explore whether they can launch a constitutional challenge against the Court’s decision.