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Anwar risks extra jail time, says Minister
Published on: Sunday, January 14, 2018

Kuala Lumpur: Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's jail time could be extended if the de facto opposition leader's recent statements had been issued from behind bars without the approval of the director-general of Prisons Department, said Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed.

"Lately, several statements have been issued by Anwar. I wonder whether he really made the statements," he said.

Nur Jazlan said the statements included Anwar's "blessing" for Pakatan Harapan (PH) to name former Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad as the opposition Prime Minister.

"If Anwar's statements were relayed through third parties and were not approved by the Prisons Department, then it is an offence that can affect the jail period."

He said action could be taken against the third parties who had relayed Anwar's statements, such as by barring further visits to Anwar.

Dr Mahathir is reported to have agreed to make way for Anwar to become Prime Minister as soon as a royal pardon was obtained for the jailed PKR leader, which would allow him to return to Parliament once more.

Nur Jazlan also said there was no need for the US embassy to issue an advisory to its citizens to avoid visiting a popular nightspot in Kuala Lumpur.

He said the embassy should have instead informed the police if it had information of alleged "coordinated drink-spiking" at The Beach Club in Jalan P Ramlee.

He said the security alert gave a negative impression and gave a wrong portrayal of the country.

It also gave the impression that all nightclubs were involved in drink-spiking, he said.

Nur Jazlan said he would get police to investigate further as sometimes people will complain on social media but not lodge police reports to enable the authorities to investigate.

The embassy issued a security alert stating that The Beach Club was off limits to "all personnel under Chief of Mission authority", citing a recurrence of drink-spiking incidents, which were first reported in 2015.

"The prohibition was not based on one singular event, but was developed after a careful review of historical events associated with this venue," it said in a statement on its website. It also warned US citizens to be careful when driving or walking about and not to wear too much jewellery.

The embassy had issued a similar advisory in 2015 against visiting the nightclub after several alleged incidents of foreigners there being drugged. Nur Jazlan said police will check if other nightclubs had experienced such alleged drink-spiking.

He said sometimes the owners were not aware of what was happening as this was the work of bartenders and waiters to charge higher prices.

He said for example, a Coke may be priced at RM10 but a Coke Plus, with Eramin 5 or Ecstasy, may be offered for RM30 or RM40. He said it was sometimes difficult to determine whether the customers wanted the extras in their drinks and also to prove the offence.

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