PUTRAJAYA (Aug 26, 2013): Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi announced yesterday that gangs involved in syndicated crimes will be “gazetted” in an attempt to curb the mounting use of fireams.

“The move is necessary so that the public are informed on the number of gangs involved as the police force attempts to clamp down on them,” he said, but declined to elaborate on the number of gangs which have been identified by the police.

On the ministry’s plans to use electronic monitoring devices (EMD) on offenders charged under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosma), he said the decision will not infringe on the civil liberties of the convicts.

“This (decision) is not a question of human rights, it is to ensure the safety of Malaysians. We will not compromise the lives of Malaysians against 10,000 (charged under SOSMA),” he added.

The EMD will be used at the end of September to track organised and violent crime suspects to ensure they stay out of trouble while out on bail.

Elly Fazaniza, the Sun Daily
In an immediate response, Lawyers for Liberty co-founder Eric Paulsen said the current laws such as the Criminal Procedure Code, Penal Code and Firearms Act are sufficient to apprehend suspects involved violent crimes.

“It would be an overkill and unlawful to use Sosma as these crimes are not security offences,” he said.

Constitutional expert Syahredzan Johan said the move to use EMD is an infringement on the Federal Constitution’s Article 5, which is the right to life.

He added the move also goes against Article 9, which states freedom of movement.

“Therefore, this should not be a norm but instead should only be used in justifiable circumstances. The potential for abuse is great,” he said.

However, legal expert Prof Datuk Shad Saleem Faruqi believes the law only needs to be amended because Sosma permits the tagging of suspects for 28 days.

Elly Fazaniza, the Sun Daily