Published: Thursday October 22, 2009 MYT 11:23:00 AM
Updated: Thursday October 22, 2009 MYT 8:09:29 PM
Tian Chua jailed 6mths for biting cop, to appeal (Update 3)
By LISA GOH
KUALA LUMPUR: Member of Parliament for Batu Chua Tian Chang, aka Tian Chua, was convicted of causing hurt to a police constable and stopping him from discharging his duty two years ago.
Magistrate Mohd Faizi Che Abu sentenced Tian Chua to six months’ jail and a fine of RM3,000 on Thursday but granted him a stay of execution pending his appeal to the High Court. If the sentence is upheld, he could be disqualified as an MP.
In his judgment, Mohd Faizi said he found Tian Chua’s defence was a mere denial and that his answers were not consistent. “His evidence is not credible.”
He said the video recording, which was central to the defence’s case, in fact supported the prosecution’s.
Mohd Faizi added that the direct and circumstantial evidence and video recording were enough to convict Tian Chua.
“Although the video did not show the act of biting, I have reasonable grounds to believe it happened, and this evidence is corroborated by the defence’s video.”
Tian Chua, 46, was charged with hurting constable Rosyaidi Anuar, 21, at the entrance to Parliament House at 10.45am on Dec 11, 2007.
He was accused of biting Rosyaidi’s arm after the police stopped the car he was in and pulled him out, on the road leading to Parliament.
In mitigation, Tian Chua’s counsel Amer Hamzah Arshad said if a heavy sentence was imposed, it would not only punish Tian Chua because the Batu constituents would be deprived of their MP if he were disqualified.
Deputy public prosecutor Hanafiah Zakaria, however, argued that Tian Chua must be held responsible for his actions.
In passing sentence, Mohd Faizi said that no one was above the law, whether he was an MP or not.
Speaking to reporters outside the courtroom, Tian Chua maintained his innocence and said he would appeal the decision.
“Even the (magistrate’s) judgment said there was no evidence presented in court that anyone saw the biting. It was based on circumstantial evidence,” he said.
Tian Chua’s other counsel Ranjit Singh said they would file the appeal as soon as possible.
Later in Parliament, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz, who is in charge of law and Parliament matters, said Chua is still an MP pending his appeal, reports LEE YUK PENG.
“Unless he has exhausted all avenues to appeal and lost, he is still entitled to his remuneration, privileges as an MP,’’ said Nazri.
Under Article 48 of the Federal Constitution, a member of either Houses of Parliament is disqualified if convicted by a court and sentenced to a jail term not less than one year or a fine not less than RM2,000 and has not received a pardon.