Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob today said that the differing penalties imposed on those violating the movement control order (MCO) is solely at the courts’ discretion.
In his daily press briefing today, the defence minister said that the government would not interfere in such matters, in keeping with the democratic spirit of a free and independent judiciary.
Ismail said the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures Within the Infected Local Areas) Regulations 2020, provides for a maximum fine of RM1,000 or imprisonment of up to six months, or both, upon conviction.
“The government does not interfere in the judges’ sentencing decision on any individuals charged with the offence in court. The judges have freedom to decide the sentences at their own discretion.
“The facts of the cases, which may differ from one another, may influence the judges to mete out different sentences,” he told the daily media conference here today.
Ismail Sabri said this in response to the different sentences meted out to MCO defiers.