KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 4 – Bersih 2.0 chairman Maria Chin Abdullah today maintained her not-guilty plea after she was again charged in the Magistrate’s Court, here, with participating in the #KitaLawan street protest, two years ago. Maria, 61, and two others, Bayan Baru Member of Parliament Sim Tze Tzin, 41, and Bersih 2.0 secretariat manager Mandeep Singh, 31, also pleaded not guilty to the charge after it was read to them before magistrate Ahmad Solihin Abd Wahid.
The three were charged together with others still at large, with participating in a street protest for certain objectives including the “Reformasi” and “Free Anwar” drive, from the fountain area at the junction of Jalan Tun Perak to in front of Sogo shopping complex, here, between 3,15pm and 6pm on March 28, 2015. The offence comes under Section 4(2)(c) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 and punishable under Section 4(3), which provides for a fine of up to RM10,000, if convicted.
Earlier, deputy public prosecutor Mohd Safarizal Zakaria offered bail of RM5,000 in one surety for each of the three charged. However, lawyer Vince Tan Hoo Seh, acting for Sim and Mandeep, asked that the previous bail of RM500 each in one surety be maintained on his clients. The court then allowed the bail of RM500 each be maintained for all the three and set Nov 3 for case mention for submission of documents.
Maria was represented by lawyer P. Rajsurian in today’s proceeding. On Sept 8, 2015, Maria, Sim and Mandeep pleaded not guilty to the same charge in the magistrate’s court, here, and were each allowed bail of RM500. However, last Aug 28, they were acquitted not amounting to a discharge when the prosecution failed to be present in court on the first day of the hearing. — Bernama