GEORGE TOWN, Feb 19 – Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and businessman Tan Sri Tan Kok Ping won their defamation suit against The FZ.com news portal and its managing editor Terence Fernandez after some four years of court proceedings.
The High Court were ordered publisher and author to pay a total of RM250,000 RM150,000 in damages to Lim and RM100,000 to businessman after finding that the report from the two respondents contained certain defamatory elements, which had portrayed both Lim and Tan in a bad light.
Justice Dato’ Abdul Wahab Mohamed also ordered the news portal to pay RM35,000 respectively, in legal costs to Lim and Tan. He said the plaintiffs had proved to the court that the defamatory content was present when the article was uploaded and remained online before it was removed about seven days later.
“In the article (‘MACC begins probe on Merc purchase which published on January 3, 2014) was a defamation element, and the second defendant failed to prove that it had reviewed the plaintiff before raising the news article,” said Datuk N. Mureli, lawyer to Guan Eng when responding to the reporters’ report outside the High Court Room 6 here.
Lawyer Christina Siew represents Kok Ping and is understood to be filing defamation suit against The Edge Communications, besides FZ.com and Terence Fernandez. Terence Fernandez, in a separate press conference, also told the reporters that he would discuss with his lawyer first, regarding the wish to appeal to the Court of Appeal stage later. — PN