Rendition Par-Kour

I sometimes find it interesting to read Malaysia Today because RPK has all kinds of juicy things to share with the rest of us. Most of us would still have wool pulled over our eyes if it wasn’t for the many exposés he has done (most of us still do). So, I came across this article saying that our police force will seek the assistance of Interpol and the British police to help extradite RPK to Malaysia because rumour has it that he is now enjoying some R&R in London.

After I read that, I felt that there was something wrong with the IGPs interpretation of extraditions. I am not a lawyer but even I know that you cannot just ask another government to extradite people to your country on whim and fancy. So, I looked it up on Wikipedia, the ever informative source. While the details may be different because a lot of it depends on the exact wording of our extradition agreements with the UK, I don’t think that it would be possible for the UK government to comply with the extradition request.

You see, one of the fundamental principles behind extraditions is that the person must have committed or at least be a suspect for a criminal offence in both nations. As I understand it writing articles bad-mouthing your Prime Minister and his family is not a criminal offence in the UK. According to the internets the UK has just recently decriminalised defamation and it is now a civil issue. Maybe that is why RPK has decided to holiday there this season. I hear that it will be a white Christmas this year. Nice!

In addition, the country must also be satisfied that the person who is being extradited would receive a fair trial, which is something that RPK claims that he will never receive. Since he has previously been detained without trial under the ISA, his claims are not without merit. The UK has refused to extradite many other people far more nefarious than RPK and who have done far worse things that bad-mouth other people because those people would receive a show-trial and a death sentence at home. That would not satisfy the UK on issues of human rights, due process and what nots.

So, I don’t think that our IGP will succeed in getting RPK extradited. However, if our government wishes to affect an extra-ordinary rendition, now that would be a whole different matter entirely.

PS: I still wonder how RPK gets to move in and out of Malaysia so easily. One would think that his name would be flagged at all entry and exit points in the country. That just totally beguiles me or maybe he is just really good at parkour.

PPS: I am a lawyer buruk.

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Shawn Tan

Chip Doctor, Chartered Engineer, Entrepreneur, Law Graduate.

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