Federal Court Orders Arrest Of Muslim Convert For Defying Court Order

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PUTRAJAYA, April 29 – The Federal Court on Friday had been ordered the Inspector-General of Police to arrest the Muslim convert Muhammad Ridhuan Abdullah for defying a High Court order for him to hand over his youngest daughter to his ex-wife.

The five-man bench chaired by Court of Appeal president Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif had allowed kindergarten teacher M. Indira Gandhi’s appeal to reinstate the mandamus order issued by the Ipoh High Court compelling the IGP to execute the warrant of committal against Muhammad Ridhuan.

He remitted the case back to the Ipoh High Court for the High Court judge to monitor executing the warrant of committal against Muhammad Ridhuan. Justice Raus said Muhammad Ridhuan had wilfully disobeyed the court order and he still refused to hand over eight-year-old Prasana Diksa to Indira Gandhi.

He said Muhammad Ridhuan defended his action when he was found guilty of disobeying the custody order and appealed to the Federal Court, adding that when his appeal was struck out he disappeared with Prasana Diksa. Justice Raus, however, said the High Court should not have granted a mandamus order to compel the IGP to execute the recovery order to locate Muhammad Riduan and retrieve the child and return to the child’s mother.

Presiding on the panel today were only four judges including Raus – Federal Court judges Datuk Azahar Mohamed, Datuk Zaharah Ibrahim and Datuk Aziah Ali as Justice Tan Sri Abdull Hamid Embong has retired. The hearing of the appeal was heard by that panel in August last year and they had reserved their decision.

On Dec 17, 2014, the Court of Appeal overturned the Ipoh High Court decision and held that the IGP could not be compelled to recover Prasana Diksa or arrest her father. In a majority 2-1 Court of Appeal judgement, the panel chairman Justice Datuk Abdul Aziz Abd Rahim ruled that the IGP had the discretion not to enforce the mandamus order as it was not of public nature.

The Ipoh Syariah High Court had on Sept 29, 2009, granted custody of the couple’s three children – Tevin Darsiny, 19, Karan Dinish, 18, and Prasana Diksa – to the father who had converted to Islam, and the Ipoh High Court on March 11, 2010, gave custody of the children to Indira Gandhi with once-a-week access given to the father.

On May 30, 2014, the Ipoh High Court cited Muhammad Ridhuan for contempt and issued a warrant of arrest for him after he failed to adhere to a High Court order to hand over Prasana Diksa to the mother. Indira Gandhi had also obtained a recovery order from the High Court to compel the police to locate Muhammad Ridhuan.

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