Anwar sues govt over sodomy conviction, calls for immediate release

KHAIRAH N. KARIM


KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is in court again to fight for his immediate release and an order to set aside his sodomy conviction on grounds that it was obtained through perjured evidence and testimony.


For the past nine years, the former opposition leader maintained his innocence of sodomising his former employee Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan, 31, on June 26, 2008, despite being convicted of the offence in 2014.


Today, in a new four-page statement of claim filed as part of his suit against the government, Anwar is seeking for an order that the conviction was null and void as well as an order for his immediate release.


His counsel N. Surendran said today that under Section 44 of the Evidence Act 1950, if a conviction was obtained by fraud, it can be subsequently set aside.


"Anwar said in his action that at or rather his conviction was obtained through perjured testimony and hence the conviction was obtained by way of fraud," he said.


On March 27, 2014, Anwar, now 61, and incarcerated at the Sungai Buloh Prison was convicted by the Court of Appeal of committing unnatural carnal intercourse against Saiful at Unit 11-5-1 of Desa Damansara Condominium in Jalan Setiakasih, Bukit Damansara between 3.10pm and 4.30pm on June 26, 2008.


He is currently serving a five-year jail term after losing his appeal at the Federal Court on Feb 10, 2015, to set aside his conviction on the charge.


The Federal Court, on Dec 14 last year, also dismissed Anwar's application to review its previous decision.