Federal Court maintains decision to drop charge against former sex bloggers Alvivi

Federal Court maintains decision to drop charge against former sex bloggers Alvivi

PUTRAJAYA - Federal Court has maintained its decision to drop charge against former sex bloggers Alvivi, relating to their Ramadan Facebook prank.

Justice Abdull Hamid Embong allowed the defence's preliminary objection that the Federal Court had no jurisdiction to hear a case that originated from the Sessions Courts.

Alvin Tan Jye Yee, 27, and Vivian Lee May Ling, 26, are on trial in the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court over three charges.

They are accused of publishing a religiously insensitive photograph, making seditious statements, and for displaying pornographic images on their blog.

Today's Federal Court panel - which included Justices Ahmad Maarop, Hasan Lah, Zainun Ali and Ramly Ali - unanimously struck out the prosecution's appeal against the dropping of the charge of stirring hostility between religions.

On April 21, 2014 the Court of Appeal struck out the charge under Section 298A(1) of the Penal Code, on the grounds the law does not apply to non-Muslims.

The panel led by Justice Mohtarudin Baki agreed with the defence that Section 298 was meant to ensure smoothness of the practice of Islam among its followers, not those of other religions.

At the hearing on Wednesday, Lawyers Chong Joo Tian and K. T. Wong represented Tan and Lee, while Deputy Public Prosecutor Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin acted for the prosecution.

The case in the Sessions Court is fixed for case management on March 6, despite the fact that Tan has jumped bail.

Tan and Lee claimed trial on July 18, 2013 before Sessions Court Judge Murtazadi Amran to three charges under the Film Censorship Act, Sedition Act and Penal Code.

The duo's original postings on July 11, 2012 caused an uproar among Malaysians of all races for their insensitivity.

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