SEPANG: A 17-year-old Rohingya boy was reunited with his brother after the government today dropped the charge against him for not possessing valid travel documents.
Magistrate Norul Fitri Hamdan gave the boy a discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA), which means the charge has been temporarily suspended.
Government lawyer Aziatul Afrizan told Norul that the prosecution was discontinuing the case at the moment and applied for a DNAA.
Lawyer Chan Yen Hui said the boy then left with his brother, who is living in Putrajaya.
“It is a reunion of sorts as the boy can observe fasting and celebrate Hari Raya in two weeks,” she told FMT.
On Dec 21 last year, he was charged under Section 6(1) of the Immigration Act for not having valid travel documents in the vicinity of the Dato Abu Bakar Baginda police station in Sepang district.
The brother, who holds a UN refugee card, had previously applied to secure bail for the boy but this was rejected by a magistrate.
Following a fresh application, the Shah Alam High Court in March set aside the boy’s detention and allowed bail on condition that he was placed under the care of a shelter home.
He was placed at Yayasan Chow Kit until the case ends and a Malaysian had posted a RM2,000 bail as directed by the court.
Chan, who appeared with lawyer Collin Arvind Andrew, said the boy and his brother had entered Malaysia through Thailand last year.
The boy was arrested as he was said to be in possession of a fake UN refugee card.
Chan said they objected to the boy being placed in a detention centre as it contravened the Child Act 2001 and Article 22 of the Child Rights Convention, which protects child refugees seeking asylum from being prosecuted.