Elza Irdalynna’s letter about her brother Khaeryll Benjamin Ibrahim @ Benjy’s ordeal – from his impeded access to counsel to his re-arrest under preventive detention laws; where on the same day his lawyer, Amer Hamzah Arshad was manhandled and briefly arrested by the police.

Speak with me

by Elza Irdalynna

On March 11th, he was arrested at his apartment’s parking lot in Segambut. Police brought him to an apartment he rented in Kepong, and after entering, claimed that in that residence, he possessed 800grams of cocaine, and 140grams of methamphetamine, and accused him of processing and trafficking, putting him under the risk of being charged under Section 39B, which carries the death penalty.

On March 12th he was remanded for 7 days. When my parents inquired if we can engage a lawyer, the Investigation Officer told us “No need.”

On March 17th, after our family waited more than an hour, we were allowed to see him for the very first time, under supervision.

Again my mother asked if we should get him a lawyer, again the I.O advised against it, claiming “Lawyer tak boleh buat apa-apa sekarang. Buang duit je. (Lawyer can’t do anything now. It’s simply a waste of money).”

On March 18th, his remand was extended another 7 days. The magistrate inquired why there was no lawyer present for him, and whether he was made aware he had the right to a counsel of his choice. He replied “No.” Therefore, he requested for one, and only nine hours later, did the I.O call to inform my mother, who promptly engaged Amer Hamzah Arshad.

But the very next day, the police used their Executive authority under Section 28A that vetoed his right to a counsel. All requests made by our lawyer to visit him was denied.

Only after we complained to SUHAKAM, did the police allow Amer to visit him.
On the last day of his remand.
After the investigations were concluded.
For only 15 minutes.

On March 25th, he was brought to court, and charged under Section 12(2) for possession of 0.24grams of metaphetamin in his Segambut residence. Nothing the police claimed they found in the Kepong residence, the cocaine and shabu that was “already packaged to be distributed” or the so called “cocaine processing mini-lab” was brought to court.

Because there WAS none.

He was released on bail. A trial date was set. He was so close to being free, and seeing his 4 year old son again.
But as he was signing the papers of his release, the Plainclothes were outside waiting.

Not two steps after he came out of the bail department, without any explanation, they re-arrested him. Amer was restrained from protecting him, and only after Amer repeatedly asked them to show their I.D, did they do so. Still, no explanation was given to the family. We were merely told to go to the Headquarters and speak to Inspector Kang. The same guy who claimed my brother possessed the cocaine they NEVER found.

He never saw us, he was “in a meeting.” He wasn’t too occupied to give the press a statement, but was unavailable to see us.
We were told by the new I.O. for this case, and the DSP (the guy who signed the papers denying my brother the right to a counsel) that they are detaining him for 60 days under the Special Preventive Measures Act (LPK), after which, they could further detain him for 2 years if found guilty.

Guilty according to them. For under this act, it is a detention without trial, like the Internal Security Act. Any information gathered from “witnesses” and “investigations” will never be disclosed to him or his lawyer, or the court. He will also not be able to defend himself against any allegations. Under this act, he will never have his day in court.

On March 25th, my brother, Ben, was denied his Constitutional rights.

For 2 weeks, our family went through hell. Sleepless nights, press waiting outside our door, Ben had asthma attacks after the police delayed themselves in acquiring the requested medication for 3 days, Mama, who is a cancer patient herself, suffered chest pains and lost her voice.
We felt it was all worth it, for we would be able to have him back.

But now, a new nightmare has begun.
Whether or not Ben is guilty, should not be for the Police to decide. If they HAD the evidence to strengthen their warrant for re-arrest, why was it not brought to court? Why is Ben not given a chance to defend himself? How can we ever know the authenticity of these so called witnesses and their statements? If there were ANY to begin with?

Under this act, I could simply be caught for any crimes of drug offences the police accuse me of, because they can claim they have enough information (even if they have absolutely nothing) and detain me. For 60 days, for 2 years, and even EXTEND it after.

Acts like this and the ISA are licenses for ARBITRARY arrest and detention. Anytime. Anywhere. Anybody.

My family and Amer will not back down. We will fight for Ben’s right. We will speak up for all of those who were silenced before us, who will be silenced hereafter.

But we seek your help. In any way at all, help us fight this. Re-post this, write on your blogs, write to your local representative, to our newspapers, and together we shall use our voice, our art, our space, to stand up not just for Ben, but for all our rights.

Liberty is a Constitutional right. It’s time to get it back.

12 replies on “Any Law that Goes Against Human Rights Ceases to be Lawful”

  1. let police do their job. if ben is found guilty, guilty lah.if not, he will be release soon.Just under LLPK, relax.i do have a mother, i do have a brother.but again, LET POLICE TO THEIR JOB. make sense if the IO said,"x perlu cr lawyer, buang duit". that's reality.he said based on his/her experience. nak bg lawyer kaya buat apa kalo kes tuh sah2 kalah? then now u have the chance to hire Amer..so wait and see.respect law.


  2. do they even know what the rule of law means? let alone respect it. one 'civilised' country, eh?

    my advice to the men and women in this country: take the initiative to educate yourself about the constitutional rights and liberties. don't just wait nonchalantly and expect the bar council to spell those out succintly what the rights are.

    if we want them (those running this country) to treat us with respect, we should at least know our basic rights (constitutional rights, judicial review proceedings etc.) as a citizen in this so called democratic country.

    after all, if they don't respect us, why should we 'respect' them in the next election?

    to ELZA : my thoughts are with u and your family. especially yuor mom. God is testing u and your family because God loves all of you. don't ever give up. consider this as a jihad to fight the unjust system. don't ever be afraid to speak out.

    " Not only must justice be done; it must also be seen to be done."

  3. For all it's stupid acts, the police were given a pay raise.Although I do not like his acting,I'd say, FREE BENJY NOW!

  4. With all due respect, the police has blatantly disregarded the available protection provisions in CPC and our so called "Constitution". Whilst i was in the police station to request for access, i was told that i need to apply through the IO. If the IO allows for access, then i will have the access, despite the fact that i was representing my clients. So, what is the purpose to have CPC and our Constitution here? Be it a Nazi state then. I was so frustrated when i realize, i need to "apply" in order to get my access to my client whilst he was in the lock up cell. God bless Malaysia.

  5. what happen to our rights as a rakyat?? or to say as humans?? guilty or not is not for the police to judge..investigate and leave it to the court to decide..

    rest asured, you will have the support of many people..some will speak out and some will remain silent..

    stand strong and the truth will prevail..

  6. If the police have evidence, charge him in court. If the person is not charged in court,it means there is no evidence!!!

  7. thank you for you immense support and concern. However, I feel I must state that I was not coached to write anything. This is not a publicity stunt, this is not an attempt at garnering public sympathy through the pleas of Ben's family member. This is my outcry. I felt it was, IS my duty to say something as his sister, and as a rakyat.

  8. somebody is coaching this girl to write a perfect letter…..even by a lawyer standard….

  9. Another typical gestapo action by the police/authorities!Charge him by all means if there is evidence and allow him the right to defend himself and jail him if found guilty.But this arbitrary action is not acceptable and should never be.Let us make our stand known in the next GE!!!

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