Media statement by Teresa Kok, Seputeh MP and DAP Wanita Secretary, at Shah Alam, 29/08/2012.
I am concerned lenient sentences have been imposed by the Session and Appeal courts on electrician Chuah Guan Jiu and former national bowler Noor Afizal Azizan for having sex with minors.
Chuan, 22, was reportedly “bound over for three years on a RM25,000 good behaviour bond” by the Session Court in Penang today upon conviction for twice having sex with his then 12-year-old “girlfriend” last year.
This follows the recent decision by the Court of Appeal to slap Noor Afizal’s wrist by bounding him for RM25,000 to be of good behaviour for five years after he pleaded guilty to the statutory rape of a 13-year-old girl.
As having sex with minors is statutory rape under the law, the court should take such sexual offences seriously.
While I agree that judges should be given discretion to sentence on sexual offenders, the courts should not send wrong message to the public that statutory rapists be sentenced lightly.
The courts should take the values of the Malaysian society and the interests of women into consideration while giving sentences to those convicted for sex with minors.
I expect to see sentences that reflect public demand.