Subscribe to our Telegram channel for the latest updates on news you need to know.
PUTRAJAYA, April 13 — Two individuals on death row after they were convicted for drug trafficking want to include the current government’s stand on the abolishment of mandatory death penalty in their review applications.
Their lawyer Ramkarpal Singh told the Federal Court five-member bench today that he is seeking to include a Dewan Rakyat Hansard regarding the proposed death penalty amendments in the review applications filed by the men.
“What we have is the position of the previous government,” he said, adding that he needs to put forward to the court on what is the position of the current government on the abolishment of the mandatory death penalty before proceeding with the review applications.
Ramkarpal then requested the court to adjourn the hearing of the review applications to enable him to get the Hansard.
However, deputy public prosecutor How May Ling objected to the postponement, saying that Ramkarpal should have done it earlier.
Iranian Hamidreza Farahmand Hassan and Ranjit Singh Jit Singh, a Malaysian, filed review applications in 2018, seeking to stay the mandatory death penalty imposed on them by the High Court pending amendment to the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 to include provisions to allow the courts to use discretion to impose a sentence other than death.
Both of them were convicted for drug trafficking and they lost their appeals in the Court of Appeal and Federal Court.
Court of Appeal President Tan Sri Rohana Yusuf, who led the bench, said the men’s review hearing had been postponed several times while waiting for the Federal Court to decide on the death penalty challenge in another court case.
She then asked Ramkarpal if he was ready to make submissions on the review applications but Ramkarpal said he was not prepared to do so today.
The court did not allow the postponement of the hearing. Following this, Ramkarpal informed the court that he was withdrawing the review applications and the court subsequently struck out the applications.
The other judges presiding were Federal Court judges Datuk Vernon Ong Lam Kiat, Datuk Abdul Rahman Sebli, Datuk Zabariah Mohd Yusof and Datuk Mary Lim Thiam Suan.
Outside the court, Ramkarpal told reporters that he withdrew the review applications on the grounds that he needed to get the Hansard, adding that he would then seek instructions from his clients on whether to file a fresh review application. — Bernama