JOHOR BARU, Nov 18 — A 31-year-old former van driver today pled not guilty to six charges in two separate courts, including rape, sodomy, extortion and assault of a 30-year-old woman in Taman Perling here last week.
Dinesh Kumar was accused of raping and sodomising the woman who cannot be named at a house in Taman Perling at 6am on November 12.
The charge was framed under Section 376 (1) of the Penal Code for rape and Section 377C of the Penal Code for sodomy.
Both provide for a maximum jail term of 20 years and whipping if convicted.
Nur Sulehan Abd Rahman prosecuted.
Lawyer Amaarpreet Singh, who represented the accused, sought bail from Sessions Court judge MV Mabel Sheela, saying his client would be put at risk of contracting Covid-19 if he were to be locked up pending trial.
The judge allowed bail of RM7,000 with two sureties and several conditions, including surrendering his passport to the court and reporting every month to the nearest police station.
She also warned him against harassing potential witnesses.
Dinesh was separately charged in the Magistrate's Court with threatening and injuring the same woman at the same location and time.
He also faced two additional charges of failing to submit his identification documents and giving false personal information to the police.
Magistrate Nurasidah A Rahman also granted the accused bail of RM12,000 for all four charges with one surety.
In the same Magistrate’s Court, Dinesh’s two friends Salwani Yusof, 28 and Dewi Riskasari, 25, were charged with injuring the same 30-year-old woman and failing to submit their identification documents to the police.
Salwani was granted bail of RM3,500 and Dewi RM4,000.
The case in the Magistrate's Court was prosecuted by Deputy Public Prosecutor Benedict Choong Kai-Qi, while Salwani and Dewi were not represented.
Both Mabel Sheela and Nurasidah set December 22 for re-mention of the case.
Johor Baru North police chief Assistant Commissioner Rupiah Wahid had previously said that a woman in Taman Perling was assaulted and extorted for RM2,000 for her release.