Amos Yee challenging bail conditions

Amos Yee challenging bail conditions
Amos Yee Pang Sang,16, is accused of attacking Christianity, transmitting an obscene image, and making an online video that insulted Mr Lee Kuan Yew, which offended those who viewed it.

A bail review for teenage blogger Amos Yee will be heard today at the High Court.

Yee's lawyer Alfred Dodwell told The Straits Times that his client will be challenging the conditions of his bail, which forbid him from posting content online.

Mr Dodwell, who is representing Yee pro bono with two other lawyers, said his client's bail conditions amount to a gag order and infringe on his constitutional right to freedom of speech.

"The reason why he is sitting in prison today is that he has a fundamental problem with the bail conditions. He feels that they are just wrong," he added.

Yee, 16, will stand trial tomorrow for attacking Christianity and transmitting an obscene image.

A third charge, stood down for now, relates to the Protection from Harassment Act. It accuses him of making an online video containing offensive remarks about founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.

The prosecution will assess whether to bring this charge at a later date.

The teenager was sent back to remand last Thursday after his bailor discharged himself, following a breach by Yee of his bail terms.

Yee, who was out on $20,000 bail, made two posts on his blog and shared those posts on his Facebook page.

"With the young these days, they are so connected. If he hasn't been found guilty and you remove his right to social media, it's like removing his right to drink water," said Mr Dodwell.

At his pre-trial conference last Thursday afternoon, District Judge Kessler Soh asked Yee to take down his latest posts, but he refused.

The judge then raised bail from $20,000 to $30,000, with the same conditions.

dansonc@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on May 6, 2015.
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