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News Code: 712


Malaysian Man and Woman Charged Just for Possessing Shiite Books

Two Malaysian people, including a homeopathy practitioner, were charged under the Perak Criminal (Syariah) Enactment 1992 for alleged involvement in banned Shia teachings.

Dr Nur Azah Abdul Halim, 41, and Mohammad Ridzuan Yusof, 31, were charged at the Lower Syariah Court here just for possessing books and documents relating to Shia Islam teachings in separate locations early this month.

Dr Nur Azah is alleged to have committed the offence at her clinic in Medan Kamunting here on Aug 5 while Ridzuan, a businessman, is alleged to have committed the same offence at his house in Kampung Jana Sambungan, Kamunting on the same day.

Both the accused pleaded not guilty to the charge under Section 16 of the enactment for disobedience to a fatwa or edict by the state Islamic religious authority.

The offence carries a RM3,000 fine or a jail sentence of two years, or both upon conviction.

Shia was gazetted as haram (forbidden) by the Malaysian National Fatwa Council on May 5, 1996.

Judge Azman Saad fixed Oct 8 for re-mention. He also retained the RM3,000 bail with one surety each imposed by the Syariah High Court in Ipoh against both the accused previously.

Dr Nur Azah and Ridzuan were charged before Syariah High Court judge Muhammad Taifor Ahmad Rusdi on Aug 5 and were released on a RM3,000 bail with one surety each. No plea was then recorded.

Syarie prosecutor Mohammad Syamil Azizan prosecuted while both the accused were unrepresented.