KENINGAU, Feb 22 — A man was sentenced to 10 months in prison and fined RM6,000 by the Magistrate’s Court here today for using a fake identity card to work as a teacher at a school in Tenom, near here, for the past 29 years.

Magistrate Nur Asyraf Zolhani imposed the sentence on Ridal Abdul Kadir, 53, after the accused pleaded guilty to the charge.

Ridal was ordered to serve the sentence from the date of his arrest on Jan 29, and that failure to pay the RM6,000 fine would result in a six-month imprisonment. The accused settled the fine.

He was charged under Section 25 (1) (e) of the National Registration Regulations 1990, which provides for a maximum imprisonment of three years or a fine not exceeding RM20,000, or both, upon conviction.

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According to the facts of the case, on Jan 29, a document inspection was conducted in the parking area of the school’s teachers’ quarters leading to the accused being arrested on suspicion of possessing a fake identity card with the number 700711-12-5369 under the name Ridal Bin Abdul Kadir.

Checks by the National Registration Department (NRD) revealed that the accused had used the counterfeit national identity card with the stated number and name to work as a teacher in the said school.

A review of records found that an identity card with the same number and name had been issued by the NRD, albeit with a Temporary Resident status.

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Further scrutiny also revealed that the accused possessed a temporary identification document with the same number and name and his birth certificate showed he was a non-citizen.

Earlier during the proceedings, NRD prosecuting officer Mohd Naser Mohd Nadzeri requested for a deterrent sentence to be imposed based on public interest and social justice, emphasising that possessing a counterfeit identity document is an unethical and irresponsible action.

However, Ridal’s lawyer, Korventt Wheezar, requested leniency, highlighting that throughout his 29 years of teaching at the school, the accused had a clean record and consistently displayed good behaviour, in addition to pleading guilty to the charge. — Bernama