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High Court dismisses application by M Ravi to bring contempt of court proceedings against Shanmugam

High Court dismisses application by M Ravi to bring contempt of court proceedings against Shanmugam

Source: TODAY
Article Date: 18 Nov 2021
Author: Nabilah Awang

Lawyer M Ravi filed the application on Oct 11 and within the same day, the Attorney-General's Chambers told the court that the application had no legal basis.

The High Court has dismissed an application filed by law firm K K Cheng Law LLC on behalf of 17 death row inmates, which sought to bring proceedings against Minister of Law and Home Affairs K Shanmugam for contempt of court, over comments he made in Parliament last month.

Lawyer M Ravi, who works for K K Cheng Law, filed the application on Oct 11 and within the same day, the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) told the court that the application had no legal basis, the AGC said in a statement on Wednesday (Nov 17).

Mr Ravi had written about the application on his personal Facebook page on the day he made it, saying that Mr Shanmugam had made remarks in Parliament earlier that month that “amounted to an interference or a real risk of prejudice or interference on an ongoing court proceeding or known as a breach of the sub judice rule”.

Mr Shanmugam, during a parliamentary debate on the Foreign Interference (Countermeasures) Bill on Oct 4, had mentioned an application before the court by 17 inmates seeking various declarations that the death penalty has been arbitrarily imposed upon them.

“Various allegations that they make, which the AGC considers to be completely scurrilous and without basis, (are) being made to simply throw mud and stir. That is the AGC’s view,” Mr Shanmugam had said.

In its statement on Wednesday, the AGC said that on Oct 13 it applied for the court to strike out Mr Ravi’s application, and the High Court then agreed with the AGC and struck it out on Tuesday.

The AGC said it will be seeking personal costs of the application from Mr Ravi and Mr Cheng Kim Kuan, ​the solicitor in charge of the case. It did not state the amount.

Previously in March this year, the AGC had issued a conditional warning to Mr Ravi for publishing an allegedly defamatory post against Mr Shanmugam.

The lawyer had claimed in a Facebook post on Nov 6 last year that fellow lawyer Eugene Thuraisingam said that Mr Shanmugam “wields influence over Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon” and “calls the shot and controlls (sic) Sundaresh Menon”.

As part of the conditional warning, which will be in effect for two years, Mr Ravi had to delete the Nov 6 Facebook post as well as publish an apology and an undertaking not to repeat his allegations.

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