Khalid Samad’s conviction upheld, fine reduced

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PETALING JAYA: The Selangor Shariah High Court has affirmed the conviction of Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad for teaching Islam without credentials.

However, judge Salehan Yatim reduced the amount of the fine from the RM2,900 imposed by the lower Shariah Court in Klang to RM1,900.

The reduced amount means that Khalid will be eligible to contest in the coming general election.

Article 48 of the Federal Constitution states that a MP is disqualified from duty if he is convicted of an offence by a court of law in the federation and sentenced to a jail term of not less than one year or a fine of not less than RM2,000.

In an immediate response, Khalid told FMT via text message that he would not file an appeal to the Shariah Court of Appeal to set aside the conviction.

“The law is such that it defines my act as a crime. We have to amend the enactment so that the meaning ‘mengajar’ (teaching) is clearly defined,” he said.

Salehan, who noted that this was the Amanah communications director’s first offence, said the RM2,900 could have resulted in Khalid being disqualified from contesting or the constituents left with no representative.

Khalid was represented by Zulqarnain Lukman while Aiman Roslan appeared for the prosecution.

Khalid was found guilty of delivering a talk at a surau in Taman Seri Sementa, Klang, without valid credentials in 2011, which contravened Section 119 (1) of the Selangor Islamic Law Administration Enactment.

Khalid claimed he was invited to the surau to speak about his trip to Palestine and not to give a religious lecture.