Kuala Lumpur (The Star/ANN) - A woman who was ordered to pay 1 million ringgit (US$314,000) in damages to her ex-boyfriend in a defamation suit lost her bid to set aside a bankruptcy order when the High Court here dismissed her application.
Senior assistant registrar Zaridah Y. Abdul Jaapar disallowed the application made by student Lee Ching Yan, 28, on Thursday after taking into account that she had failed to pay the RM1mil judgment sum stated in a bankruptcy notice issued in January by teacher Lee David Clayworth, 33.
Clayworth, a Canadian national, is now entitled to file a creditor's petition against Lee, which can make her a bankrupt.
A three-man Court of Appeal panel chaired by Justice Ramly Ali had ruled unanimously last month that Lee had to pay general damages of 750,000 ringgit ($235,000) and aggravated damages of 250,000 ringgit ($78,500) to Clayworth for statements made via email, Facebook and other Internet sites, which implied the teacher was, among other things, intoxicated, lustful, a liar, and had made a pornographic video.
In a statement of claim filed on Apr 6 last year, Clayworth said Lee had broken into his residence on Jan 18, 2011, and stolen his property, including his laptop, which she used to send defamatory messages to everyone in his contact lists through his Hotmail, Facebook, Skype, MSN Messenger and email accounts.
Clayworth also claimed Lee had produced photographs of him in the nude and attached them to an email dated Feb 21, 2011, which she had sent to his friends, colleagues and students, including lecturers and staff in his workplace.
Lee raised the defence of denial of publication, and filed a counter claim against Clayworth for harassment, which was later dismissed.
Judicial commissioner Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera ruled in Clayworth's favour and awarded him general damages of 150,000 ringgit ($47,000) and aggravated damages of 50,000 ringgit ($15,000).
Clayworth later cross-appealed to the Court of Appeal on the quantum of damages.
Clayworth was represented by Ken St James and Harleen Kaur, while Lee was represented by Azhar Jalaluddin.