Final 12 months, Malaysia’s attorney-general filed an utility to quote Malaysiakini and editor-in-chief Steven Gan for contempt of court docket over 5 feedback posted by readers on its web site that it mentioned undermined public confidence within the judiciary.
In a six to at least one determination on Friday, a panel within the Federal Court docket dominated that Malaysiakini held full accountability for its web site, together with no matter is printed.
The panel, nonetheless, discovered Gan not responsible of the offence. It’s unlikely Malaysiakini will be capable to enchantment the decision because the case was heard earlier than the nation’s highest court docket.
Malaysiakini and Gan have maintained they might not be held accountable and the offending feedback had been instantly eliminated after they have been contacted by police.
Gan and Malaysiakini’s authorized crew couldn’t instantly be reached for touch upon Friday with the court docket nonetheless in session and forward of a sentence being introduced.
In January, Gan mentioned reporters shouldn’t “hand over” within the face of what he described as “harassment” by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s authorities.
He mentioned within the twenty years since he based Malaysiakini, its journalists had been declared traitors, confronted debilitating cyber-attacks, kicked out of press conferences, arrested, and raided by the police.
Malaysia has moved up the World Press Freedom index compiled by Reporters With out Borders in recent times. However rights teams have mentioned freedom of speech and freedom of the press face renewed stress after an surprising change to a Muhyiddin authorities in March final 12 months.
The federal government had denied that it was clamping down on media freedom.