Three Mongolian women who were detained after whistleblowing on the alleged rape of two other women by a police officer were released today, their lawyers said.
The three were released from custody under an interim protection order (IPO) after lawyers from Thomas Philip Advocates and Solicitors filed an application for review on the order.
The IPO had been issued under the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (Atipsom) Act, but the lawyers have contended that there is no evidence to suggest they were involved in human trafficking or migrant smuggling.
The three women were placed under the IPO on April 14 after coming to the aid of two other Mongolian women who were stopped at a roadblock and allegedly raped on April 12 at a hotel by the police inspector who detained them.
In a statement on release today, Thomas Philip credited “widespread media coverage and calls from several groups” that had led to the three whistleblowers being released.
“The revision was to be heard tomorrow but has become academic in light of their release today,” the law firm said.
“By any measure, the initial detention of the ladies by the police was clearly an affront to the fundamental rights of the women,” the firm’s founder and managing partner, Mathew Thomas Philip, said in the statement.
The police inspector accused of the rape has been released on bail and also suspended from work.
The investigation paper on the case has been submitted to the public prosecutor and Thomas Philip said they are now waiting to see if charges will be proffered.
The law firm also said a civil suit has been filed against the accused by the rape victims for special, general, punitive and exemplary compensation as well as any other relief deemed appropriate.
The civil suit also seeks judicial relief from the hotel in Petaling Jaya where the incident took place as joint tortfeasor for acting on the police officer’s instructions and facilitating his actions.
Both have been fixed for mention on May 27th. – TMI