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Unwritten Federal Court judgement delays review

PUTRAJAYA, 28 Oct 2008: The hearing of an application for a judicial review by five Hindraf leaders detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA) was adjourned today because there was no written judgment by the Federal Court.

Federal Court judge Datuk Nik Hashim Nik Abdul Rahman, who presided over the hearing, ordered the previous Federal Court panel which made the decision to write the judgment.

He said the court could not proceed without the grounds of judgment.

Justice Nik Hashim, who sat with justices Datuk S. Augustine Paul and Datuk Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin, then adjourned the hearing until the written grounds were ready.

Earlier, counsel for the five men, Karpal Singh, informed the court that today’s hearing was for a judicial review of the Federal Court’s rejection of their habeas corpus appeal to be freed.

On 14 May 2008, a three-member Federal Court panel headed by Chief Judge of Malaya Datuk Alauddin Mohd Sheriff (now Court of Appeal president) dismissed their appeal after ruling that their detention at the ISA camp in Kamunting by then Internal Security Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi was lawfully executed.

The five detainees are lawyers M Manoharan, 46, who is also the state assemblyperson for Kota Alam Shah, P Uthayakumar, 46, V Ganapathy Rao, 40, R Kenghadharan, 40, and former bank officer K Vasantha Kumar, 36.

They were held without trial under the ISA on 13 Dec 2007 after being involved in street demonstrations in Kuala Lumpur on 25 Nov, and issuing allegedly slanderous statements against the government.

They took the case to the Federal Court after failing to get the High Court to release them. — Bernama


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