By Bernama | Malaysian Digest

The police can seek the court to issue a remand order on a suspect for up to 14 days to facilitate an investigation of an offence which is punishable by death or imprisonment of 14 years or more.

Criminal laywer Amer Hamzah Arshad said under Section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the magistrate could authorise the detention of the suspect for the offence and the detention should not be more than seven days on the first application, and not be more than seven days on the second application.

He explained that if the offence which was being investigated was punishable with imprisonment of less than 14 years, the detention shall not be more than four days on the first application and shall not be more than three days on the second application.

“Whenever any person is arrested and detained in custody and it appears that the investigation cannot be completed within the period of 24 hours, and there are grounds for believing the accusation or information is well founded, the investigating police officer (IO) can make a remand application before a magistrate.

“Whereby, the IO is required to transmit to the magistrate a copy of the investigation diary and shall at the same time, produce the suspect before the magistrate,” he said.

Amer Hamzah was responding to a question on Malaysia’s remand process pertaining to two foreign women detained for seven days, beginning today to facilitate investigations into the killing of Kim Jong-nam, the estranged older half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Jong-nam, who was using the name Kim Chol, was reported to have been in KLIA2 at 8am on Monday to board a flight to Macau when a woman suddenly covered his face with a cloth laced with poison. He died on the way to a hospital.

Amer Hamzah said before the expiry of the remand period, the IO must complete his investigation and refer the investigation papers to the deputy public prosecutor (DPP) for instructions.

The lawyer who has vast experience in criminal cases said if the DPP was satisfied, there was a case and the suspect would be charged in court.

“If the investigation is still incomplete, then the suspect will have to be released on bail. If there is no case, then the suspect will be released unconditionally,” he added.

To another question, he said whether the suspect was Malaysian or foreigner, the same legal rights applied where the suspect had a right to legal representation during the remand proceedings.