By Kousalya Selvam | Sinar Daily

Heidy Quah (right) with her lawyer New Sin Yew (left) at the Kuala Lumpur Courts Complex today.

The Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court today granted a discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA) to activist Heidy Quah Gaik Li over a charge of sharing offensive content on Facebook.

Her lawyer New Sin Yew when contacted said judge M.M Edwin Paramjothy made the order on grounds that the charge against her was ‘defective’.

This was after the court allowed a preliminary objection filed by Quah.

New said the charge failed to adhere to the strict language of section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) 1998 and that it lacked the necessary legal ingredients.

He said the court also found that the charge against his client was not in compliance with sections 152 to section 154 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC).

“The accused was left in the dark guessing as to the charge made against her.

“Her rights under Article 5 of the Federal Constitution have been infringed by the CPC.

“To allow the trial to go on would be an abuse of process, and would diminish or render the accused’s constitutional right to be ineffective or illusory,” he told Sinar Daily.

At this stage, the trial has not started.

On July 27, last year, Quah, 28, was charged with knowingly making and initiating the transmission of offensive messages by stating that refugees at the Immigration detention centres were ill-treated.

The founder of NGO Refuge for the Refugees was accused with making the offensive content through Facebook under the name “Heidy Quah” at about 5.30am on June 5, 2020.

The posting was later read at the Immigration detention depot’s management division office at the Immigration headquarters in Putrajaya at about 3.30pm on June 10, the same year.

The charge under section 233(1)(a) of the CMA carries a maximum fine of RM50,000 or imprisonment for up to one year, or both, if convicted.

The judge also ordered for her RM2,000 bail to be returned.