Former Uber driver Lam Chang Nam will be withdrawing his legal bid for an acquittal over two charges linked to the disappearance of Pastor Raymond Koh, his lawyer said.
Counsel Aaron Mark Pius said this was because Lam was yesterday recharged for the same offences of extortion and kidnapping for which he had been previously granted a discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA).
Mark told Malaysiakini that his client was brought before the Petaling Jaya Magistrate’s Court around midday and recharged with the same set of offences.
On July 20, Malaysiakini reported that Lam faced the possibility of being recharged in relation to two charges of extortion and kidnapping linked to the case of the missing pastor.
It was reported that the Petaling Jaya Magistrates’ Court had earlier granted Lam a DNAA for the two charges.
It was also reported that Lam had filed a revision application seeking a full acquittal instead of a DNAA over the two charges.
Mark said that Lam claimed trial to the same set of charges before Magistrate Nurshahira Abdul Salim. The prosecution was conducted by DPP P Vitiya Monisha.
The defence lawyer said the new extortion and kidnapping charges had the same set of alleged facts as the ones Lam was first charged with.
“Both charges were read out to the accused before the magistrate. The accused was recharged for the same set of offences under Sections 365 and 385 of the Penal Code,” Mark said.
Section 365 deals with the offence of kidnapping or abducting with intent to secretly and wrongfully confine a person while Section 385 is in relation to the offence of putting a person in fear of injury in order to commit extortion.
Mark said the court granted Lam bail of RM3,000 bail with two sureties and fixed Sept 21 for mention of the matter.
The lawyer also said that due to his client having been recharged, they would be withdrawing Lam’s revision application against the earlier DNAA.
“We will withdraw the revision application at the (Shah Alam) High Court because it has been rendered academic and redundant,” Mark said.
Malaysiakini is in the midst of reaching out to the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) om Lam’s recharging.
On March 15, 2017, it was reported that Lam was charged at the Petaling Jaya Magistrate’s Court with extorting RM30,000 from Koh’s son.
Koh was abducted on Feb 13 that year.
It was reported on Jan 16, 2018, that Lam was also charged at the Petaling Jaya Magistrate’s Court with kidnapping Koh.
On April 3 last year, a three-person Suhakam panel concluded that social activist Amri Che Mat and Koh, who vanished in 2016 and 2017, respectively, were victims of enforced disappearances.
The panel also unanimously concluded that the perpetrators were members of the Special Branch from the federal police headquarters.
On Feb 13, it was reported that Koh’s wife Susanna Liew sued the police and the government to compel them to reveal the missing pastor’s whereabouts. – Malaysiakini