Plea bargaining and the hidden dangers

By K.Siladass
of Lincoln’s Barrister-at-Law of Malaya, Advocate and Solicitor.

On Monday 13 December 2010, the Chief Justice of Malaysia, Tun Zaki Azmi announced that, “accused persons in criminal cases will get 50 per cent reduction from the maximum punishment under the plea bargain system which will be implemented soon”. There was no explanation under which statutory provision this plea bargaining, and the reduction of punishment prescribed by various laws will apply or the types of cases to which the new system may be applicable. However, one thing that was so apparent was the emphasis that this reduction of punishment would help to clear backlog of cases. That gave the impression clearing of backlog of cases was far more important than seeing justice being done. It is in the light of what had been disclosed for the consumption of the pubic that prompted the public to question whether the negative consequences that could arise from such implementation had been considered.

As on 14 December 2010 the public were not informed that the Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Code 2010 (Act A1378) had been passed by Parliament and Royal assent had been obtained on 2 June 2010. The Act A1378 was gazetted on 10 June 2010. And plea bargaining had been given statutory effect; but, has not been implement as yet.

The public must be shocked on learning the fact that the Bar Council had been negotiating or debating about the plea bargaining and was a party to it long before the amendments were introduced in Parliament and duly approved. It is rather odd that such an innovation had been kept away from the scrutiny of the public; for, had it been made public, there would have been representations on the pros and cons on the amendment as it is the public who are directly affected by the crimes that are committed, and they have an interest in the matter of punishment – whether it be severe or lenient.

Aside this, we are not told what would happen to the one-third remission which a convict is entitled to on account of good behaviour. Would half the statutory punishment on pleading guilty mean the one-third remission would still apply. If that is the case crime would seem to be a lucrative enterprise; for, take away half the statutory penalty and one-third remission the convict will be back in society to terrorize the public within a short period of time. Should we be surprised that the next move will be the reduction of the number of strokes?

In fact, SUHAKAM is on record recommending “that a committee be set up comprising all stakeholders to examine the issue of plea bargaining. And we will never understand why this recommendation was ignored.

Plea bargaining may be good but an encouragement to plead guilty with a statutory assurance that the penalty will be halved could lead to other problems. Backlog of cases should not be the sole criteria to encourage plea bargaining but we must also see the kind of protection society will have and how the reduction in penalty will help change the criminals away from the life of crimes. Experience had shown that incarceration alone had not in any way helped to reduce the crime rate. Having said that it will be equally true that reduction of penalty can never be the solution for backlog of cases. The crime rate in the country is in the increase, and there will be more cases clogging the Courts.

It is true that the laws on plea bargaining have been implemented in India and Pakistan.

In India plea bargaining does not apply to all types of cases as there are exceptions. The position in Pakistan is also different; for, although the plea bargaining has been given statutory effect there is no provision to bargain over the penalty: it being the Court’s sole privilege. The Malaysian plea bargaining does not provide any exception, the punishment seems to be general and applies to all cases. The time honoured discretion vested in the Courts had been taken away.

Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Act 2010 (Act A1387) applies to all cases and it is hard to guess whether any consideration was given to domestic crimes, and ever-growing sexual crimes against children, and the menace by snatch thiefs all of which are on the ascending scale, not forgetting the violent nature of the crimes that are constantly committed.

The amendment to the Criminal Procedure Code also enjoins the court to weigh the feelings of the victims. To what extent this will help to balm the damaged feelings of the victims is hard to predict. The gulf between the damaged life of a victim by a criminal act inflicted upon him or her and requiring the victim to make a statement of impact are two different things. We can only, in an artificial way, describe the differences but in real life it is a difficult exercise; for, how could the Court measure the victim’s feeling, actual feeling, over the crime that had resulted in immense loss and suffering?. Damaged life could be objectively analysed; but feelings are infinitely subjective. And what is the purpose of this statement of impact on the victims? Would the Court give any weight to the feelings of the victims; if so, it is not clear. Besides, when it is already statutorily provided that a mandatory reduction of 50% will be available on pleading guilty, what usefulness could be derived from the statement of impact?

If we accept law is rigorous and justice is mercy then we have a unique situation where an accused person buys off mercy by pleading guilty. Hence how does the feeling of the victim come into play? When law and justice had combined to clear the backlog of cases why ask a victim as to what he or she feels about the punishment? Suppose the victim makes a statement how badly his or her life had been affected and nothing in the world would induce him or her to forgive the accused, would the court take that into account before passing sentence? The Court has no power to enhance the sentence. The amendments do not allow any discretion when the accused had pleaded guilty.

Besides, there are criminal syndicates which profit from criminal activities and who have been luring young men and women to join in their unlawful enterprises, especially drug related offences and illegal bettings which are the common areas where the youths have been recruited to be carriers and bookies respectively. These young men and women fresh from schools, are promised of protection from the law as well as security in the event they are imprisoned. The amendments, if implemented, without looking into these kinds of problems would encourage crime syndicates to recruit more young men and women to participate in criminal activities, which could lead to unimaginable social problems.

There could also arise situations where the police investigations too would not be up to the mark; but, the accused who may be a victim of circumstances coaxed into pleading guilty with the promise of the sentence being halved. Or well organised crime syndicates would induce those in their pay-roll to plead guilty so that the principals could escape from law and their identity kept as a secret. This means the police would not be thorough in their investigations for they could induce the accused with the statutory reduction of 50 per cent. The temptation is great and the danger so frightening.

Take the case of an overzealous police officer who having arrested a person on suspicion induces him to plead guilty because the sentence would be halved. This may sound unethical and unthinkable but the possibility cannot be ignored.

Another area which would be the main concern is that by focusing only on the problem of backlog of criminal cases alone we might be ignoring the real danger; for, this may lead to slipshod police investigations, and a licence to overzealous arresting officers to be not diligent in their investigations as they could convince the accused or a suspect, that he could get away with a reduced sentence.

What the learned Chief Justice and those who are involved in this plea bargaining system should do is seek curative panacea to the backlog of criminal cases, not to devise procedures pregnant with far reaching consequences.

Much was discussed and many suggestions were made at the Forum on the Right to an Expeditious and Fair Rrial held in March 2006 organised by SUHAKAM. Some good ideas that were workable were presented but never considered by the Government or those who are interested in expeditiously concluding cases. It is suggested that SUHAKAM’s recommendations should be considered very seriously.

Backlog of criminal cases may be a sign of inefficiency or lack of commitment yet it is not a crime, but, to encourage the plea of guilty with a promise of half the statutory penalty is indeed a bizarre encouragement to commit crimes. This should be avoided at all costs.

What would be the position of our Muslim brethren when charged with an offence under Syariah laws? Although a Muslim will be dealt with under the Syariah Laws for any offence so committed yet it would be an anomaly that there could be different sentences in the country, one is religion and the other secular. This also is not helpful to create the feeling of being a proud Malaysian.

Perhaps the learned Chief Justice, the AG’s Chambers, and the Bar Council, would recall the words of wisdom of the late Chief Justice Hashim Yeop Sani in the case of Public Prosecutor v. H. Chamras Tasaso [1975] 1 MLJ 95 at p. 45 which were as follows:

“At the outset let me say this. I would rather live with arrears and backlog of cases, which is I think a lesser evil, than have cases disposed of with such a speed and in such hurried a fashion as would leave in the minds of the ordinary persons a lingering suspicion that something is not right. Justice must not only be done but must manifestly be seen to be done. This case which I have called for revision is a case in point.”

I hope that the learned Chief Justice and his judges would free themselves from the fear of backlog of criminal cases and give due respect to justice. There are many ways to overcome backlog of criminal cases. As it is, judicial time is being wasted in unproductive matters such as “mention” in civil cases. If the judicial time could be distributed in a more practicable manner, then, criminal cases could be speedily handled. In this context all parties must play their parts effectively. Backlog of cases can never be resolved by mere reduction of punishment. What happens if counsel advises his client, an accused, something like this: “Let us see how the prosecution presents the case. If the evidence is too strong, then, we can start plea bargaining!.” There is nothing in the law to prevent such a development. The time frame affixed for criminal cases for trial in a speedy manner is commendable and in this regard the co-operation from the police is inevitable in furnishing police reports, cautioned statements well in advance and be prepared at the pre-trial conferences. However encouraging to plead guilty alone with a promise of half the statutory penalty is certainly not going to be helpful as it also suggests that crime is a tolerable problem. It would be helpful if children are taught in schools of the evil side of crime from a young age thus help them to develop an attitude against crime.

In the interest of justice and to protect the public from criminal acts that are so rampant now, it would be prudent if the amendments are withheld and the public be invited to submit their representations. Backlog of cases are real but the danger posed by crime syndicates are far more serious and could be the threat to society’s aspiration to carry on with its life free from fear of being hurt; and being hurt badly. Let us not make Malaysia the haven for criminals.

  1. #1 by DAP man on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 7:21 pm

    How much is 50% reduction for murder? Half the noose? Or hang one ear, one leg and one hand?

    Malaysian Justice is standing on its head with a CJ who bribed a court staff when he was a lawyer and an AG who went on a free passage for his haj.
    And judges who make decisions before the trial begins.

  2. #2 by DAP man on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 7:26 pm

    “As on 14 December 2010 the public were not informed that the Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Code 2010 (Act A1378) had been passed by Parliament and Royal assent had been obtained on 2 June 2010.” Dass

    Something is not right here. How can the Royal assent be given (on 2 June 2010) before the CPC amendment was passed by Parliament.( 0n14 Dec 2010).
    The cart before the horse?

  3. #3 by monsterball on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 8:21 pm

    It is a fact that thousands of cases are being prolonged by lawyers with “lenient” one eye closed judges at the expense of the employees of lawyers to represent their cases to pay more court appearances fees of a standard charge of RM500 per appearance.
    Right now…hundreds of lawyers are making suckers of their clients.
    This is one of the main reason for so many backlog cases…besides cases are heard at few hours delay working time and long long lunch and prayer time taken.
    Our Govt management is wellknown to be unproductive and can never learn to improve with all sorts of excuses given…so much so…it is a habit to find short cut solutions to cover up all sorts of weaknesses and nonsense.
    Plea bargaining is good for thousands of back log cases that are involving persons or companies breaking the laws…that hurt no one…except the Govt..such as income tax…and people caught on crimes.. hurting the Govt funds being short changed by these people.
    For the Govt. to just put out approving the idea of plea bargaining in a general sense is either telling Malaysians…..they still do not know what is real justice…which we all know for decades of their double standards …unfair and unjust governance.. ..with laws being lumped into politics…so much so….our laws are actually being managed by the most unlawful government…and one to expect clear explanations and guidiances…is asking too much..from rouges and thieves.
    Until we change the Govt…it is waste of time to expect permanent fair solutions for anything right now.
    At the back of the UMNO B’s top gun minds are always…will they loose voters doing this or that.
    How can you expect good ideas to be implemented with such mentalities and attitudes?

  4. #4 by HJ Angus on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 8:45 pm

    yes it seems the authorities are taking the easy way out with such plea bargaining measures.
    Even now we have the AG’s office disposing of VVIP cases with the Twilight zone of NFA.

  5. #5 by sheriff singh on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 8:51 pm

    Have you all heard of the Prisoner’s Dilemma? Google it and find out.

    Let us hope this plea bargaining thing is not used just for improving KPIs, taking the easy way out, for monetary gain etc., for it might be a tragedy.

  6. #6 by sheriff singh on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 8:58 pm

    Given the state of the Judiciary, I say bring back the jury system.

  7. #7 by Thor on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 9:23 pm

    Traffic summonses giving out discounts and now court cases having discount “sales” as well.
    Walau…yeh! would be criminals must be very happy with such offer.
    Our country must be full of jokers!

  8. #8 by good coolie on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 10:33 pm

    Why the backlog of cases? a) Lawyers having too many cases (biting more than they can chew, beggaring other lawyers who are left with their tongues hanging out); b) Judges
    delaying on their cases c) Government not spending enough on the Judicial System (more staff, more training, more courts buildings); d) all of the above, and more.

  9. #9 by tak tahan on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 10:53 pm

    Backlog criminal cases can be sorted out slowly.Must tell the judges to look into those highlighted scandals like Datok Anwar,Teoh,amirulrashid(14 year old boy),Kugan,the what chief judge Zaki something etc.Big one just ignore,small small one so…so..worry.Beh tahan

  10. #10 by waterfrontcoolie on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 10:54 pm

    No wonder the criminals are celebrating! Soon we will have international Procurement Corporations setting up shops in Malaysia!

  11. #11 by tak tahan on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 11:04 pm

    Maybe umnoputras bulldozed this thru to ready themselves in case they got booted out in the next GE.Uncle Kit,let me in the lock to bash them like robocop.

  12. #12 by Cinapek on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 11:25 pm

    “…That gave the impression clearing of backlog of cases was far more important than seeing justice being done….”

    It is a cultural thing with these products of ketuanan. Just like the 50% discount for traffic offences, the mentality seems that we must be forgiving to those who have committed crimes as long as they have cooperated, no matter how grave or serious their offences may be.

    This “discount” culture is what breeds more social ills because the wrong doers knows there will always be this “forgiving” factor in their punishment as long as they cooperate or “maaf”.

  13. #13 by undertaker888 on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 11:49 pm

    umno crooks know they will lose ge13. so time to introduce plea bargaining for them.

  14. #14 by tak tahan on Friday, 14 January 2011 - 11:57 pm

    Monsterball,thanks for migration definition.What say you this topic?You rest a lot a this hour ya?By the way congrats to ur daughter’s achievement on her study result.I can see ur smile.I don’t know why the comment still needs moderation considered even for praise.

  15. #15 by boh-liao on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 12:14 am

    After 50% reduction, still got further 30% discount 4 Bumiputras or not?

  16. #16 by tak tahan on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 1:56 am

    Something not right with my pc.No idea why when mentioning ur name or too much nah..nah..words..

  17. #17 by yhsiew on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 3:27 am

    You can’t always use money to compensate for wrongdoing. Money can’t buy everything.

  18. #18 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 6:29 am

    If Karpal is right about the Chief Justice bribing judges etc when he was a lawyer, then if we conclude that the judiciary is riddled with corrupt fleas, then plea bargaining is going to be another ‘source of income’ for corrupt officials.

    I can imagine how traffic policemen can raise the stakes in the bargaining process now that fines on traffic offences are more expensive! So why not other court officials and enforcement officers?

    How do we address such problems before we legislate what we cannot control? If the system is corrupt, first thing is address those loopholes, pitfalls and rats-infested waters before the leptospirosis outbreak; then only inroduce plea bargaining.

  19. #19 by Jeffrey on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 6:59 am

    This CPC amendment is just to help CJ Zaki mnage caseloads & clear the backlog in courts. Lawyers tell me there have been discernible improvements in the speed with which courts clear cases compared to before (since Zaki took over).

    Writer K.Siladass speaks of hidden dangers of Plea bargaining without telling also its hidden benefits. People get wrong impression when one presents the issue as if this whole amendment to CPC is a simple issue of which is more important – to clear backlog or to do justice, with the latter suffering, injustice to victims of crimes and also larger society when deterrence to criminals is lowered by this punishment discount of 50%. The issue is hardly that simple.

    The fact is there are always pros and cons to anything including plea bargaining. Certainly the pros are thought on balance more than cons, that’s why plea bargaining is accepted as regular part in the administration of criminal justice anywhere.

    Plea bargaining is usual in countries having commonwealth legal system. It is not just UK or the USA that has been implementing pleas bargaining for a very long time. It has been going on here in Singapore & Malaysia for a very long time as well.

    In S’pore case for example they also offered plea bargaining to Nick Leeson (who bankrupted Barings Bank) in the form of dropping multiple charges and go or only one against him if he implicated other culpable Baring executives whom otherwise there’s no proof to nail them. (Plea bargaining is not just offering lower sentence if one pleads guilty but also dropping a few other charges so that punishment is not so severe on cumulative basis). Recently S’pore authorities also offered 75 year old British author (Alan Shadrake) of “Once a Jolly Hangman: Singapore Justice in the Dock” a plea bargaining deal that the S’pore AG’s office would drop a contempt of court charge in exchange for an apology for statements about Singapore’s judicial system. Alan rejected it, whether because he felt he was not guilty or his books would sell after after serving the sentence!

    So in Malaysia too plea bargaining wasn’t new issue, introduced just yesterday due to those CPC amendments mentioned by Siladass that were passed in Parliament without even PR Opposition or apolitical stakeholder Bar Council highlighting to public.

    Plea bargaining has been going on all along here for literally decades. The only problem is that this bargain and deal is strictly in legal theory struck between Prosecutor AG and the defendant and not binding on the judge. What it translates to in practice is (i) prosecution will ask the defendant for a guilty plea in exchange for a reduced sentence; (ii) reduced sentence means Prosecutor tells judge that deal has been struck, please consider reducing punishment when sentencing; (iii) Judge said OK he would reduce sentence from maximum of 10 years to (say) 7 years when both Prosecutor & the accused expect 5 years would be fair and agreed between them. Both AG & Defence get shocked by Court’s sentence in spite of plea bargaining but couldn’t do anything because their “contract & bargain” is non binding on the judge. Other defendants who otherwise would enter into plea bargaining won’t do so because AG couldn’t keep to the deal because of the Judge going another way!

  20. #20 by Jeffrey on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 7:48 am

    That a judge/court had every prerogative not to bother about plea bargaining deal between AG and the Defence happened in New Tuck Shen v Public Prosecutor (1982). Justice Justice Wan Yahya said “This court does not consider it bound by the private bargaining between the prosecution and the defence and imposed a heavy sentence even after accused cooperated with Prosecution which disclosed to court the plea bargain entered into.

    The Defendant will ask, “what kind of criminal justice system is this? I pleaded guilty, didn’t fight, Prosecutor said OK it would support clemency plea because of the defendant’s cooperation and then Judge, contrary to this bargain, turned around and said he was not part of the deal, it was non binding on him, so he proceeded to impose a heavy sentence contrary to the AG-Defence bargain!

    This CPC (Amendment) is to lock in the Judge to the bargain! It’s like telling him, “of course you have discretion but your discretion cannot override the statute law (CPC amendment) passed by Parliament that requires you to give 50% discount relative to maximum sentence prescribed for the offence.

    Our amendment followed India/Pakistan’s to address this problem – only difference in India’s case at least the mandatory discount is not offered for grave crimes like homicide (not amounting to murder) whereas in our case its for all cases involving custodial jail sentence except those (murder or drug trafficking) for which mandatory sentence of death sentence is prescribed by law. Even for latter case AG could bypass CPC and using prosecutorial discretion enter into plea bargaining in the other form – “you plead guilty to culpable homicide and we won’t charge you for murder one!”

    At the end of the day whether justice is served or otherwise depends on human factor – the Govt prosecutors and judges and defence attorneys. If these were corrupt, then the best system will also be corrupted as they go around to exploit the system whether new or old!

    The main issue on this CPC Amendment is therefore not so much to do with the question of whether we should have Plea Bargaining. We have always had this process. So do UK, USA, S’pore, Canada etc but the real question is what manifold unforeseen problems will arise with this CPC amendment to statutorily require the Judge to be bound by 50% discount to maximum sentence. Has it been thought through properly before passed into law? If there are creases in the cloth of this amendment have they been identified and ironed out before being passed as law esp when nobody (including Opposition as well as Bar Council) seemed bothered to highlight!

  21. #21 by Jeffrey on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 7:50 am

    The only guy who has done so (besides lawyer K.Siladass) is Rodger Tan (ex lawyer now corporate man and blog writer. I think Rodger wrote about it in Sunday Star 19th Dec 2010 under caption “Bargain for Justice”.

    Some lawyers practicing Criminal law are not happy with the CPC amendment as it affects their rice bowl. No trial because of plea bargaining means no fees from conducting the case – but never mind, he can still charge a fee for negotiating with AG Dept or arguing for lower sentence from Judge. But if 50% discount for sentence is prescribed by law, where is his role to justify his fees? Susah lah ini macam!

    However some of the ambiguities highlighted by K.Siladass are true. They need to be ironed out. The AG draftsmen should think through.

    One example – Supposing I have been charged for an offence which the law (Penal Code) prescribes maximum sentence of 10 years.

    Now if I contest the case, I might win a complete acquittal. Or I may lose. If I lost it does not mean the Judge might impose maximum sentence of 10 years. He might impose only 3 years. But I am not sure. I am sacred of 10 years, so I plead guilty and “kena” 5 years. The judge is wondering what’s wrong with me. In worst case he would have imposed 3 years but because of CPC amendment that is kicked in once plea bargain happens his hands are tied and he impose 5 years based on 50% discount! He can’t tell me. It is not his business to get involved with my right to bargain with AG.

    That’s the other side of the coin!

  22. #22 by Jeffrey on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 8:26 am

    Clearing backlog is very important and if and provided that this statutorily CPC mandated 50% can help, why not?

    From justice angle there’s wider corollary problem from backlogs – remand cases.

    We have many remand cases. A prisoner on remand is someone who is imprisoned before the start of his or her trial. This is because he’s not granted bail or if granted he being poor could not come out with bail money. So he sits in jail like other criminals even though he is presumed innocent until proven otherwise guilty beyond reasonable doubt when it comes to his day in court to defend himself.

    But that day in court never comes. Courts calender is conjested.

    Because of backlog his case is eventually tried in 4 years time – which is joke for in some cases if he had been tried and found guilty the maximum sentence is only 3 years and judge might even impose 2 years but in our example he has already spent 4 years in jail/remand before he gets his day in court!

    This offends every one’s sense of justice but what to do, so many cases, inefficient court procedures, postponements by the lawyers who got other cases in other courts, judge is sick or simply not efficent enough to look through his notes and research on law to come out with quick decision.

    This is Malaysia Boleh. We’re not a society based on competitive drive and meritocracy: everything grinds slowly….

    Within these constraints what’s the best we can do for these prisoners remanded who have not been proven guilty?

    Many of them are poor and ill educated with no lawyer worth his salt to help except when he’s so poor as to qualify for legal aid…Not to mention many of them may actually be innocent but anyway just unlucky to be apprehended by our police! These guys are rotting in prison.

    Zaki’s main drive since he took over to clear court conjestion and backlog is commendable to extent that he is more efficient than previous CJ(s) one of whom preferred to holiday in NZ with his favourite lawyer. As I said, you ask the lawyers and many will confirm that court cases are disposed faster nowadays since Zaki, which helps the lawyers to collect their fees faster than way back. This CPC amendment is intended to help him clear the backlog.

    But whether it is well drafted – or just cut and paste by AG draftmen without proper input from all relevant stakeholders to cure ambiguities – is another issue. If one does not think through it may cause greater set of problems than those others that it solves.

    Thats the crux of the issue: it is all about people. Do we have quality people or quantity of people pretending only to have quality but actually imposters trying to make a living and surviving better than what their capability can support?

    If we don’t have human capital all kinds of problems arise from nincompoops and we correspondinly decline in all fields, whether in economics, law, politics etc.

  23. #23 by k1980 on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 10:14 am

    50% reduction for murder means that the convict is hanged until only 50% dead, then resuscitated and released to commit more murders.

  24. #24 by Winston on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 10:33 am

    With the next GE being around the corner, we all know who will be the ultimate beneficiary of this rule!!!
    Also, the way serial criminals, who are supposed to be sentenced to decades in jail, and who have their numerous crimes taken into consideration, have to serve only a fraction of what they have to.
    So, who says crime doesn’t pay!
    In this country, it is a very, very lucrative profession!
    It is clear as day that the more crimes you can commit before you’re caught, the better!

  25. #25 by HJ Angus on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 11:34 am

    If one looks at plea bargaining with a broader view, society as a whole benefits if justice moves faster.
    But it should not apply to all cases as the AG’s office may simply become an admin office instead of seeking justice and the plice may even become more lackadaisical in probing crimes.
    It can work well if both the AG’s office and police are highly professional but is that the case in Malaysia where even judges can be suspect when they do not provide written judgements.
    As for remand cases, even without a plea bargain, I think the laws should be changed so that these people are discharged after fixed defined periods dependent on the charge. Can someone work out the cost to taxpayers of the costs of keeping people in remand without their cases being held?
    If we take RM20 per day including overheads to hold each person and there are say 10,000 prisoners, the cost per day is RM200k.
    Judges will impose sentence based on the charge against the prisoner – so if the prisoner has agreed to manslaughter with the AG, the judge cannot sentence the case based on murder?

  26. #26 by boh-liao on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 11:56 am

    50% discount justice means d lady with d balance in her hand has 1 good eye, d other eye is blue-black n swollen

  27. #27 by dagen on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 11:59 am

    After some intense bargaining the convicted killer of ah tan and the prosecution finally came to a crucial agreement of the issue of punishment. In particular, on the manner in which the punishment is to be executed.

    “My lord” called out the Federal Counsel in open court. “An agreement has been reached with the convict on this important aspect.” “Yes counsel” the judge querried. “It will be death by self-strangulation my Lord”: the Federal Counsel replied. “Indeed, my Lord”: confirmed the convict’s counsel. “It was agreed upon by my client the convict, my Lord.” “Fully” and “voluntarily, my Lord.”

    “Very well.” “I hereby sentence you to death by self-strangulation.”

  28. #28 by dagen on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 12:08 pm

    “Death by unassisted and manual self-strangulation.” “Which final event, i.e. death, must occur not later than 7days from the commencement of the unassisted and manual self-strangulation procedure.”

  29. #29 by undertaker888 on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 1:19 pm

    50% discount justice. If umno crooks stole 1million, they just need to give back 500k. plus 30% for the likes of katak Ibrahim, that would be just 350k. not bad for a day of stealing.

  30. #30 by Godfather on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 7:01 pm

    This is typical civil service laziness and incompetence. How many high profile cases have we lost ? Noritta Shamsuddin murder, the Koh Kim Teck case, etc etc proves that the prosecution is simply useless. What about the Soosilawati case ? Gonna wait for plea bargain provisions to become law, so that the prosecution is not seen to lose this case too ?

    This gives a new meaning to the oft used Indonesian phrase “semua boleh beres”.

  31. #31 by Godfather on Saturday, 15 January 2011 - 7:06 pm

    AG’s Chambers: If you plead guilty, we can get you a lighter sentence.

    Crook: Ok, so what’s the catch ?

    AG’s Chambers: 100k for 2 years’ jail, 50k for 4 years’ jail and 10k for 5 years’ jail. If no money, you’ll get 7 years.

    We have the most flexible justice system in the world !

  32. #32 by tak tahan on Sunday, 16 January 2011 - 1:48 am

    Ha.i..Manage to get my neighbour’s son to register next week.He supervises operations in the gambling outlet and one of his staff said without BN no more gambling would be allowed and he is worried for job.$&!?????..err…My neighbour son’s next door’s aunties and uncles are worrying no more job for them in government sector..teachers and whateever according to him if they dont’t vote BN la..?????So PR will close down all the schools and government i told went to one of their premises(operation house) and called his boss to meet up tommorow cause i saw him in my neighbour’s house.Younger chap than me,probably age 23..and i want to talk to him.I spent RM100 in the outlet and the same others spent hundreds$$$.Bunch of bugis,turks,kurds.and so on..Good making money la like getting crumps of breads ala mca.They got instruction to close from Jan 15 except to operate in the house..WOW..see how mata-mata has penetrated in their business..i guess from long time ago..ala mca

  33. #33 by tak tahan on Sunday, 16 January 2011 - 7:46 am

    A week ago ,one old chap(petrol owner) told my dad someone (MCA) managed to get the road properly done near his home or his business premise??.Whah lau eh.So BN just did it for his sake???Kena taroh from my dad..politely.But i would have been more sarcastic depends on the situation given.Anyway i learned some lesson from there.Keep the temper down,right,monsterball?Tahan,tahan dissenter and talk sense to him out of no sense from him.Otherwise tak tahan,taroh him kau kau and ummp ummp.

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