Thursday, March 27, 2008

Raja Petra Ordered To Pay RM4m In Damages

The High Court yesterday ordered blogger Raja Petra Raja Kamarudin to pay RM2 million to Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) vice-chancellor Tan Sri Dr Nordin Kardi in general damages over an article he posted on his website "Malaysia Today" two years ago.

Deputy High Court Registrar Priscilla Gengadaran also ordered Raja Petra to pay RM2 million to the university over the article which appeared on the website on Dec 16, 2006.


Raja Petra and two defendants did not defend themselves and they also failed to appoint counsel.

Nordin, the first plaintiff, and UUM, the second plaintiff, had filed a defamation suit against Raja Petra (first defendant) and three others -- Parti Keadilan Rakyat (second defendant), chief editor of the opposition party's organ, Suara Keadilan (third defendant) and editor of the bulletin (fourth defendant) -- on Feb 25 last year.

Nordin and UUM claimed that Raja Petra and the three other defendants had published the libellous article with intention to tarnish his and UUM's good name and integrity.

The article Dato' Dr Nordin Kardi Ciplak Karya Saya? Mohon Penjelasan... (Dato' Dr Nordin Kardi plagiarises my works? Please explain...) was first published in Raja Petra's website, "Malaysia Today", on Dec 16, 2006.


The article authored by Muhtar Haji Suhaili had claimed his works Mahasiswa dan Tanggujawab Menguruskan Kejayaan (Graduands and the Responsibility in Managing Success) was plagiarised by a person who had used the name Dato' Nordin Kardi.

As it turned out, Raja Petra had picked up the article which was posted on a website at http://muhtarsuhaili.tripod.com.

The article was subsequently published in Suara Keadilan on Dec 27, 2006.

In her judgement, Priscilla also ordered the chief editor and editor of Suara Keadilan to each pay Nordin RM1 million for publishing the article.

They also each have to pay UUM RM500,000.

Nordin and UUM were represented by Mohd Khairul Azam Abdul Aziz.

Priscilla, however, has yet to fix a trial date for the PKR which is represented by R. Sivarasa.

Meanwhile, Nordin described the judgment as a landmark decision against a cyber misconduct. "I hope others who might have been defamed by cyber misconduct would consider legal action against the wrongdoers.

"I also hope the High Court decision would serve as a deterrent against any attempt to invade the integrity of an individual or institution," he said. (NST)

*****
Deputy Registrar Priscilla Gengadaran seems to be dishing out fines for damages as if they were Smarties candy. I doubt if such exorbitant fines, for this or any other case, will be allowed by the higher courts. The days of judicial excesses and imprudence going unchecked are over.
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5 Comments:

Anonymous SM said...

They are using their "lap dogs" in the Judiciary to get at the Bloggers now.
Raja Petra has been a thorn in their side for a long time & he has also been "instrumental" in the "Tsunami" that occurred in the 12th GE.
This is TOO MUCH we should stand by this man who has had the guts to go against the UMNOputras!
Hopefully he can "contest" this stupid decision...RM4 Million!!!!!

2:44 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wouldn't be too worried if I was RPK. The judge made a fundamental mistake in her judgment. It is textbook law that for a judgment in default of a cause of action like defamation, you can only enter a judgment for damages to be assessed. You cannot enter a fixed sum in damages for judgment in default of appearance for a cause of action like defamation.

Any rookie first year lawyer knows that. It just goes to show how low the standard of the judiciary is. Priscilla Gengadaran should resign and go back to law school.

9:39 PM GMT+8  
Blogger DIASPORA said...

If what 'anonymouus' says is supported by the Legal fraternity - then it is possible that there are many more judicial officers who need the guidance of Judges of high competence.

Malaysia should not be subjected to further ridicule over its Judiciary and the competence of the Judicial system as a whole.

This country will go to ruins if the Judiciary is going to be continuously humiliated for want of quality Legal Personnel.

It is likely that the 'mindset' of the Judiciary which followed the Tun Salleh Abbas episode, which brought shame and infamy to Malaysia as a whole, has become more deeply embedded in the mindset and may not be removable unless the physical asset concerned are all removed from office.

Hopefully our Minister in charge of the Judicial service would give an open mind to the prevailing mindset of our Judicial system.

Malaysians eagerly await the cleansing of the dirt which our leaders threw on Tun Salleh Abbas and the other indomitable Judges the likes of whom Malaysians will never see or hear of again.

It is our National fate that we have to bear the burden of the twisted Tribunal that was created to judge the Judges.

At this point of time the Comnstitutional amendment brought about by Tun Dr Mahathir to 'judge' our Rulers should be thrown out. That is the least respect and regard that we can show to our Rulers who have become the bulwark against the UMNOPUTRAS; the MICPUTRAS and the MCA/GERAKAN PUTRAS.

DAULAT TUANKU - OUR SAVIOURS

8:54 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am so surprised that the judge made such an elementary mistake. There are literally loads of authorities on this. Just did a simple google search and came across this Malaysian case http://www.ipsofactoj.com/archive/1986/Part3/arc1986(3)-009.htm

The proposition of law is stated in paragraph 6.

Toru

10:21 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought or at least read somewhere that this was a bunch of intellectuals that were taking on RPK. It would not say much for thier intellect if indeed they can't get the basic law right..or for that matter a bunch of bloggers ( they maybe qualified lawyers) can find such gaping loopholes so easily. I think RPK was right- if these are intellectuals then Madonna is a virgin.

3:14 AM GMT+8  

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