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Anwar's lawyers to seek house arrest if final review fails

Malaysiakini  |  Published:  |  Modified:

PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim's legal team will seek to reduce his sentence to house arrest if it fails to secure an acquittal and release in his final sodomy conviction review, next month.

"Of course we want to get him released, period, and are going for an acquittal. If that doesn't work we will try for house detention which is allowed under Malaysian law," Anwar's lawyer Kimberley Motley told The Australian.

Anwar's team will highlight the lack of DNA evidence and inconsistency in sodomy accuser Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan's testimony in the October 12 appeal, said Motley who was appointed this month.

Motley, who met Anwar last week despite initial hurdles to access her client, said Anwar is "obviously preparing for (the review) but he's not necessarily expecting a victory".

“Every single step of the way has been a fight. There’s a lot of ­intimidation going on," she reportedly said.

Sungai Besar Umno division chief Jamal Md Yunos last week threatened to stage a demonstration against the American lawyer at the Federal Court on Oct 12.

This followed Motley's call for the public to attend the review hearing.

Anwar's lawyer Latheefa Koya condemned Jamal's "threat" as an attempt to "interfere" in the judicial process.

Anwar appointed Motley, a renowned human rights lawyer to assist in a number of cases, including his review of the February 2015 sodomy conviction.

The former opposition leader has always maintained that the sodomy charge, similar to the first against him in 1999, was fabricated by his political rivals.

However, the government has denied this.

Anwar is serving a five-year prison sentence.


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