Two death row Malaysians sue over ‘threat’ by Singapore’s AG

Lawyers for Liberty had alleged that Changi Prison in Singapore used extralegal execution methods. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Two Malaysians on death row in Singapore have sued the republic’s attorney-general for allegedly threatening their lawyer over their application for a stay of execution.

They want a declaration that the attorney-general’s alleged threat against their Singapore lawyer, M Ravi, is in breach of their right to a fair trial.

The lawsuit was filed by Lawyers for Liberty at the Singapore High Court today on behalf of Gobi Avedian and Datchinamurthy Kataiah who were sentenced to death for capital offences involving drug trafficking.

Lawyers for Liberty are seeking a stay pending investigations into claims Singapore used unlawful methods of execution.

Singapore lawyer M Ravi.

Ravi had sought a court order to protect a former prison officer cited by LFL in its allegations of extralegal execution methods at Changi Prison

In an affidavit provided by LFL today, it said that during a pre-conference trial for their stay of execution application, the prosecutors had threatened their lawyer by saying, “We reserve our rights against Mr M Ravi”.

LFL said the duo had been advised that this was an act of interference by the prosecutors and an “implied threat” towards their counsel.

In the application for a stay, Gobi and Datchinamurthy had cited claims by LFL last month that Changi Prison guards employed brutal execution methods if the rope broke during execution – allegations rejected by the government.

LFL last month also sued Singapore’s home minister after he invoked the republic’s Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act to force the group to publish the government’s denial alongside its claims of brutal execution methods in Singapore,

Refusing to do so, LFL said Singapore had no jurisdiction to interfere in Malaysian citizens’ rights to freedom of expression.