Red Shirts leader Datuk Seri Jamal Yunos has been remanded for three days following his controversial beer-smashing antic outside the Selangor state secretariat building (SUK).
A remand order was granted by the magistrate court in Shah Alam to the police against Jamal and seven others at 12.45pm today.
They are being investigated under Section 143 of the Penal Code for unlawful assembly and Section 268 for public nuisance.
If found guilty, they can be imprisoned for up to six months, or fined, or both.
\Counsel Khairul Anuar Kashim, who represented Jamal and the rest, said his clients were picked up by the police at 1.45am this morning while dining at a restaurant after a meeting in Sekinchan, Sabak Bernam.
He said the seven who were arrested were not Jamal’s supporters but were his driver, bodyguards and staff members.
Earlier at the courthouse verandah, Jamal, in handcuffs, gave a brief press conference to the media.
”My friends and I who are arrested might end up being charged and thrown in jail but we don’t care. The fight against beer festivals will go on.
”Our arrest today does not even deter our determination to see beer festivals banned in Selangor,” Jamal said.
On Thursday, the Shah Alam police received complaints from security guards following Jamal’s demonstration cum press conference outside the SUK.
The Sungai Besar Umno division chief created a stir when he turned up with some 20 supporters and a pickup truck with 10 crates of beer, only to find the gates closed.
”Today I want to send all these beers to (Selangor Menteri Besar) Azmin Ali’s office.
”He and his gang can drink all they want inside but not anywhere outside,” Jamal said.
He had sought to meet state Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Azmin Ali to voice his protest. When denied entrance by security officers, Jamal proceeded to smash several crates of beer with a sledgehammer outside the gate in protest of beer festivals.
The beer cartons and bottles were pasted with a logo bearing ‘The Better Beer Festival 2017’ concealing the brand name.
After destroying the crates, Jamal and his group ignored calls by a security officer to clear the broken bottles outside the gate.
He reportedly told reporters that the state government should not encourage the public to organise parties with free flow of beer.
He said he was just protesting against beer festivals and was not denying the right of non-Muslims to drink alcoholic beverages.
Utusan Malaysia had earlier reported Azmin as saying the Selangor government would not prevent the beer fest from being held in the state.
However, the menteri besar denied giving approval for the Better Beer Festival 2017 to be held in the state after the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) had rejected the organisers’ application for the event last month.
In a statement issued by the Selangor Menteri Besar’s office, strategic communications director Yin Shao Loong had said that it was “an utter lie” that Azmin had approved any beer festival and disregarded police advice, FMT reported.
“We challenge Utusan Malaysia to produce proof that he had said any such thing,” the statement said.
Malaysiakini reported that Jamal said in a text message following his arrest: “I was surrounded and arrested by the police at Sekinchan after finishing an Umno division meeting.
“I think this is going too far. I am now on the way to Shah Alam police district headquarters.”
Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today said that UMNO does not sanction the behaviour of Jamal over his stunt at the SKU.
Describing Jamal’s latest stunt as “among the dumbest”, MCA’s Ti Lian Ker said the latest stunt by Jamal will only cost Barisan Nasional (BN) votes in the upcoming general election. He said it must be condemned and chastised by BN leaders so that it can be dissociated from the ruling coalition.