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Judicial CP - August 1999

Borneo Bulletin, BSB, 13 August 1999

Man who ran amok loses court appeal

By Ignatius Stephen

Twenty-five-year-old Haji Awang Maaraj bin Haji Jaludin who got drunk, ran amok and attacked a police officer with a knife before punching an army officer will stay in jail, the Brunei High Court has ruled.

In addition the court heard when the enraged Haji Awang Maaraj shouted at two men on duty at the post at Bangar Army Camp, they promptly fled the scene.

Brought before Judge Dato Steven Chong in the High Court Haji Awang Maaraj, now serving an 18-month-jail sentence and sentenced to six strokes of the cane, was appealing against the sentence handed down by a lower court.

But the judge said in his view, the gravity of the offences merited more severe sentences.

If any criticism could be levelled against the sentences, they erred on the side of leniency, the court remarked.

"These were offences involving violence with injury to the victim, deliberate destruction of government property, the threat to public security," the judge said.

The general public and public servants concerned in the lawful execution of their duties must be firmly and clearly protected from such lawless behaviour, the court added.

The judge, in dismissing the appeal, remarked that the appeal was made in February this year but unfortunately "for some inexplicable reason" was not set down for hearing earlier.

The judge also referred to an "unsatisfactory omission" on the part of the prosecution that Haji Awang Maaraj's list of previous convictions, which included theft and drug offences were not brought to the notice of the magistrate as they had not been prepared at that time.

"The Chief Magistrate may well have been inclined to impose more severe penalties if he had the notice of the previous convictions of the appellant for theft and drug charges," said the judge.

According to the facts of the case, Haji Awang Maaraj went to the bachelors' barracks at Bangar Army Camp to look for one Roslan.

He approached soldier Norazman and when informed that Roslan was not there responded by punching him in the face and attempted to stab Norazman with a knife.

Following this wholly unprovoked assault, Haji Awang Maaraj went to the sentry post where he broke the glass window and kicked open the door.

He ran amok and shouted at two men on duty at the post who promptly fled the scene, the court said.

The enraged man caused damage to a clock on the premises.

The police were alerted and Inspector Hussein with other officers caught up with the man at a road block at Perkuburan Semamang.

Haji Maaraj resisted arrest and attacked Inspector Hussein with a knife.

Concerned over the safety of the public at the scene, the police allowed the suspect to leave for home.

The police went to Haji Maaraj's home but were forced to make a hasty retreat when he emerged brandishing a parang.

He was subsequently arrested at a hospital where he had gone to seek medical treatment for a cut on his head.

Borneo Bulletin, BSB, 19 August 1999

Husband jailed for threesome

By Ignatius Stephen

A threesome tryst has earned a husband three months in jail and three strokes of the rattan.

Judge Steven Chong heard that the offence took place in a house in Jerudong on January 29 and the 21-year-old man was arrested when the grandmother lodged a police report. He faced a charge of rape.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Awang Mohd Yusree told the court that the man's 13-year-old sister-in-law came to spend her school holidays with the man and his wife when the incident happened.

His 16-year-old wife assisted the man, who pleaded guilty, in committing the offence in their room, the court heard. The court in sending the man to jail and ordering the strokes said the offence was a serious one.

Copyright © 1999 Brunei Press Sdn Bhd. All rights reserved.

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