The Royal Malaysia Police has arrested a woman for her Facebook comments that were deemed "seditious in nature" with a potential to disrupt the peace of the country amidst the COVID-19 pandemic
In a media statement today, 12 April, Bukit Aman Criminal Investigation Department (CID) director Huzir Mohamed said that they arrested the 48-year-old Chinese woman yesterday, 11 April.
"The gadget used to upload the statements were also seized and investigations are ongoing," Huzir said.
According to the statement, the woman's Facebook comments were "seditious in nature" and were attempting to humiliate the Malaysian government amidst the current crisis caused by COVID-19.
PDRM has publicly shared the screenshots of the comments
In one, the woman wrote that Malaysia is being "hijacked" by military force, alleging that Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin is abusing his power during COVID-19 to stay in power.
In another, she wrote that the reason Chinese people call Malays babi is that they are angry with them "for cheating them" through not paying back debts, causing them to go bankrupt.
The Facebook account belongs to a 'Wendy Shoo Wai Ching' and the case is being investigated under Section 4(1)(a) of the Sedition Act
"On 9 April, an investigation was conducted a Facebook account holder that goes by the name 'Wendy Shoo Wai Ching', who uploaded a seditious and potentially disruptive statement," CID director Huzir said.
The Section 4 of the Sedition Act specifies that anyone who "does or attempts to do, or makes any preparation to do, or conspires with any person to do" an act with seditious tendencies, such as uttering seditious words, or printing, publishing or importing seditious literature, is guilty of sedition."
The charge carries, for a first offence, a maximum fine of RM5,000 or three years' imprisonment or both, if found guilty. For a subsequent offence, the person can be jailed for a term not exceeding five years.
The woman is also being investigated under two additional charges
"The investigation is classified under Section 504 of the Penal Code, which is the "intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace" and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) 1998 which is the improper use of network facilities or network services," read the statement.
While Section 504 of the Penal Code carries a maximum of two years' imprisonment, Section 233 of the CMA 1998 carries a maximum fine of RM50,00 or one years' imprisonment or to both.
Meanwhile, Huzir has urged the public to practice caution
He said that police will not compromise when it comes to people making, producing or distributing statements or rumours that are seditious in nature and can disrupt the public order.
On the other hand, the JPM has now defined news that is critical and "instils hatred towards the ruling government" as fake news:
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