Crackhouse saga: woman’s partner claims trial to misusing Internet

Crackhouse saga: woman’s partner claims trial to misusing Internet

Alexander Navin Vijayachandran, 38, maintains innocence on two charges

KUALA LUMPUR – A man who allegedly uploaded insensitive material to online platforms has pleaded not guilty to two charges at the sessions court in Petaling Jaya today.

Alexander Navin Vijayachandran, 38, maintained his innocence when the charges were read to him before judge Azrul Darus.

On one count, Alexander was accused of posting content on his Instagram account on June 5 with the intention to insult other people.

The second charge was regarding a video uploaded to his YouTube account on June 16, alleged to also be intentionally disruptive to others.

The charges were made under Section 233(1)(a) of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) 1998, which covers the misuse of communications networks and carries a maximum of one year in jail, or a fine of up to RM50,000.

Defence lawyer Ramesh Chandran confirmed with The Vibes that justice Azrul had set a RM10,000 bail with one surety for each offence.

Deputy public prosecutor Firdaous Mohamed Idris represented the prosecution while lawyers Ramesh and R. Sivaraj acted as defence counsels.

The accused is believed to be the boyfriend of Siti Nuramira Abdullah, 26, who had earlier today submitted a not-guilty plea at the criminal sessions court here for allegedly insulting Islam during an open mic comedy skit at the Crackhouse Comedy Club.

In a video which went viral on social media, Siti Nuramira claimed to be a Muslim and to have memorised 15 chapters (juzuk) of the Quran, before stripping off her headscarf and baju kurung to reveal a sleeveless top and mini skirt.

She was charged under Section 298A(1)(a) of the Penal Code which relates to deliberately causing disunity, ill will, or hatred on the grounds of religion.

Besides a RM20,000 bail, she was ordered by judge Siti Amirah Ghazali to report herself at the Brickfields district police headquarters on a monthly basis until the completion of her case.

She will also have to turn in her passport and is barred from making any social media posts relating to the case.

The couple was represented by the same team of lawyers, with R. Sivaraj noting to The Vibes that the judge had not set similar conditions for Alexander’s bail.

Adding that the prosecution had submitted for bail to be set at RM40,000 for each charge, he said the request was “unprecedented”, considering how the offences are minor in nature.

He also said that the couple is having trouble gathering the funds needed to post bail as their mobile devices and bank cards have not been returned to them.

“Their friends are trying to help them out but a sum of RM40,000 for both of them will require time and generous friends,” he said.

“Hopefully they will be able to post bail for at least one of them by the time the court closes today. If not, then they will be in custody until the money is collected.”

The Crackhouse Comedy Club had previously lodged a police report at the Taman Tun Dr Ismail police station against Siti Nuramira, adding that she and her partner had been barred from the venue immediately after the performance.

Her act eventually led to the club’s operating licence being temporarily suspended by the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), a move that has been criticised by some of the biggest names in Malaysian comedy and similar venues.

Deputy Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Jalaluddin Alias also said that DBKL will issue a show-cause letter to the comedy club as it was running with only a restaurant licence, and not one needed for entertainment.

The Federal Territories Islamic Religious Department has also conducted a preliminary investigation into the video, with its director Datuk Mohd Ajib Ismail saying that the probe had been carried out by Jawi’s enforcement division.

source – The Vibes

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