Security firm told to pay RM114,470 to RTM cameraman over shooting incident

Part-time cameraman Mohamad Amirul Amin Mohamed Amer outside the High Court in George Town today.

GEORGE TOWN: The High Court today awarded RM114,470 in damages and costs to a part-time cameraman from Radio Televisyen Malaysia who was shot by a rogue bodyguard along a highway here in 2016.

Mohamad Amirul Amin Mohamed Amer was one of eight people said to have been shot by Ja’afar Halid along the Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway on Dec 1, 2016.

He filed a vicarious liability suit against Ja’afar and his employer, GMP Kaisar Security Sdn Bhd (GMP) on June 1, 2018, asking the court to hold the company responsible for Ja’afar’s actions.

Justice Hadhariah Syed Ismail ruled in favour of Amirul, saying GMP should have known the foreseeable danger of an employee holding a firearm, especially as the weapon was owned by the company itself.

She said GMP had clearly lost track of Ja’afar despite standing orders by the home ministry that companies whose employers are armed must constantly be monitored.

She added that GMP’s defence that Amirul had entered the scene knowing that an armed man was on the loose was flawed.

Mohamad Amirul Amin Mohamed Amer with his lawyer K Simon Murali.

Based on Amirul’s statement, she said, he was there to assist another man whom he thought had been involved in an accident. She said if Amirul had known that the man had a gun pointed at him, he would have fled.

She ordered GMP to pay special damages comprising RM10,000 for loss of earnings and RM4,470 for medical expenses, general damages of RM70,000 and RM30,000 in costs.

During the trial, a consultant psychiatrist had confirmed that Amirul was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.

A document was also made available to the court showing that Ja’afar had worked as a bodyguard for PKR’s Mohamed Azmin Ali (2008-2009) and Nurul Izzah Anwar (2009-2010).

Ja’afar declined to provide evidence during the trial although invited to do so by Hadhariah.

Former bodyguard Ja’afar Halid (in football jersey) being led out by court bailiffs.

He faces three counts of murder and five counts of attempted murder, and has claimed trial to all.

Amirul was represented by K Simon Murali and Kok Yuen Lin while GMP was represented by Mohammad Nor Azam Rashid and Samry Masri.

Speaking to reporters today, Murali said the court had given a landmark ruling concerning private security companies and their responsibility for their workers.

“These security firms are ultimately responsible for the supply services of armed bodyguards and personnel, especially when a shooting of this nature takes place,” he said.

An elated Amirul meanwhile said he was glad that justice had been served.

“Until today, I am still suffering,” he added. “The damages are just enough to cover the cost of my treatment.”