PUTRAJAYA, April 27 — An unemployed man escaped the hangman’s noose after the Federal Court here today set aside his conviction for trafficking in 112,892 grammes of cannabis and instead sentenced him to jail for drug possession.
A three-member bench led by Justice Datuk Seri Mohd Zawawi Salleh sentenced Rosli Yusof to 18 years’ jail and 10 strokes of the cane after substituting the charge to possession of the drugs, which was found concealed in five rice bags.
He ordered Rosli to begin his jail term from the date of his arrest on December 6, 2014.
The other two judges presiding on the bench were Datuk Nallini Pathmanathan and Datuk Mary Lim Thiam Suan.
According to the charge, Rosli, 39, committed the offence at Hentian Juru (southbound), Central Seberang Prai, Penang, at 10pm on December 6, 2014.
Based on the facts of the case, a police team arrested Rosli and found five rice bags, containing 119 packets of compressed plants which were later found to be cannabis, in the boot of the car he was driving.
On May 31, 2018, the Penang High Court found Rosli guilty of drug trafficking and sentenced him to death.
On October 8, 2019, the the Court of Appeal dismissed his appeal against the conviction and sentence.
Rosli’s lawyer K. Simon Murali told Bernama that the court set aside the conviction for drug trafficking on a point submitted by him that his client was denied a fair trial.
In the appeal hearing today, Murali submitted that the prosecution had failed to offer four individuals — three Malaysians and a Thai national — who were investigated together with Rosli, as witnesses to the defence, hence, denying his client the opportunity to call them as his witnesses.
Deputy public prosecutor Abdul Ghaffar Ab Latif appeared for the prosecution.
According to Murali, his client has about five years more to serve the jail sentence, adding that Rosli will only serve 12 years in jail after taking into account the one third remission. — Bernama