Mohd Shafee vs Raja Petra: Courts sets Aug 26 for defamation suit

(The Star) – The High Court has fixed Aug 26 for the case management for the defamation suit filed by lawyer Datuk Muhammad Shafee Abdullah (picture above, left) against Malaysia Today editor Raja Petra Kamarudin.

Deputy registrar Wan Nursalina Wan Abdullah fixed the date in her chambers at the court complex here Tuesday.

She ordered the plaintiff to file in the agreed bundle of documents, issues to be tried and agreed facts by the date.

Lawyer J. Chandra acted for Raja Petra and mentioned on behalf of Muhammad Shafee.

Muhammad Shafee is suing Raja Petra over three alleged defamatory articles published on Aug 6, 7 and 11, 2008 on the Malaysia Today website (“Shafee Abdullah: Sodomologist Extraordinaire“, “Money, Power and Sex: What Motivates Man” and “The Real Dalang Behind The Anwar Sodomy Allegation“).

On Aug 15, 2008, the press reported a commotion that broke out in a magistrates court here when Muhammad Shafee tried to serve a court order on Raja Petra asking him to remove three alleged defamatory articles against him from the Malaysia Today website.

On that day, Raja Petra, who is currently believed to be hiding in London, flatly turned down the service of the order.

On Sept 2, 2008, Raja Petra succeeded in getting a court order that stopped Muhammad Shafee from acting for himself in the defamation suit he filed against the editor.

The High Court later issued an injunction restraining Raja Petra, whether by himself, his agents or otherwise, from allowing articles, journals, letters, comments, posts and statements that are defamatory of Muhammad Shafee, accessible over the Internet.

In a statement of defence filed Nov 25, 2008, Raja Petra contended that he would adduce detailed evidence over the matter during the trial.

In applying for the suit to be dismissed with costs awarded to him, Raja Petra contended that Shafee’s action is wholly misconceived and untenable in law and/or is an abuse of the process of court.

Raja Petra denied that the three articles (above) which were published on Malaysia Today were false, malicious or defamatory of the lawyer.

Raja Petra also denied having in his possession of facts pertaining to the identities and numbers of readers/ visitors/ commentors on his website.