FB user jailed for insulting Islam, to undergo mental observation for another month

The appellant escorted by a prison officer.
The appellant escorted by a prison officer.

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By Dorcas Ting

KUCHING, May 16: Alister Cogia, who was jailed 10 years and fined RM50,000 after he pleaded guilty on March 8 to insulting Islam on Facebook, will remain in Kota Sentosa Mental Hospital until June 17 for a third round of observation.

The 22-year-old from Singai, Bau, who goes by the name ‘Ayea’ on his Facebook account, was brought to the High Court, here, today as his second round of observation was due today.

But a doctor from the hospital told the court that another month was needed to observe.

Judge Azhahari Kamal Ramli extended his observation at the hospital under Section 342 of the Criminal Procedure Code, and this will be the last round of extension the court is entitled to grant.

Judge Azahahari Kamal also fixed June 17 for mention to tender Alister’s mental report.

Alister was arrested at an unnumbered house in Singai on March 3 at about 12.15am and was later charged with commenting on Facebook that could cause disharmony among the people and discomfort to the people of the country on Feb 9 at about 7.11pm; on Feb 10 at about 12.56am; on Feb 14 at about 1.28am; on Feb 24 at about 10pm and on Feb 24, at about 10.05pm.

He was slapped with 10 charges, where five were framed under Section 298A(1)(a) of the Penal Code and punishable under Section 298A(1) of the same Code. The remaining five charges were under Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998.

After Alister was sentenced by Session Court Judge Jason Juga on March 8, an appeal was filed on March 13 through counsels Francis Teron, See Chee How, Desmond Kho, Jeffery Mok and Chai Pei Chen. — DayakDaily