1 Dec 2006

Feer to appeal against court decision to proceed with suit

SINGAPORE: Feer to appeal against court decision to proceed with suitFar Eastern Economic Review appeal against prime minister's defamation suit will be heard early next year

Straits Times
Thursday, November 30, 2006

By Zakir Hussain

The Far Eastern Economic Review (Feer) will appeal against a court decision that a defamation suit against the magazine should proceed.

The notice of appeal was filed on Monday, two days before yesterday's deadline, said Mr Peter Low of Peter Low Partnership, which is representing Feer.

The magazine is appealing against the decision Assistant Registrar Dorcas Quek made on Nov 15, when she dismissed its application to get the courts to throw out the suit by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew.

The application was made last month by the Hong Kong-based magazine's publisher, Review Publishing, and its editor Hugo Restall.

PM Lee and MM Lee had sued both of them in August over an article titled, Singapore's "Martyr," Chee Soon Juan, that Feer published in July.

In it, Mr Restall cited, among others, the National Kidney Foundation scandal, saying it raised questions about the Government's supervision of the charity.

He also wrote about the Government's handling of public funds and questioned its reputation.

Lawyers for the Lees said the article was calculated to disparage both leaders.

Feer's bid to throw out the suit was argued behind closed doors earlier this month.

Mr Low, in arguing the case, had objected to the serving of a writ of summons on his clients in Hong Kong in September.

The procedure, he said, was not in keeping with a legal treaty Singapore had with China.

The writ must be served through "diplomatic channels," not by lawyers appointed in Hong Kong, he said.

Senior Counsel Davinder Singh of Drew & Napier, representing the Lees, said the treaty did not apply as it was a treaty between Singapore and China, and has no application to Hong Kong.

Another argument Mr Low made was that the Lees were asking the court here to extend its jurisdiction beyond Singapore as their claim for damages was not limited to what is applicable here.

But Mr Singh said the claim for damages was restricted and concerned only publications and re-publications in Singapore.

In dismissing the Feer application, Ms Quek also ordered Review Publishing and Mr Restall to pay the Lees $24,000 to cover their legal costs.

The appeal is scheduled to be heard on Jan 3 next year.

Date Posted: 11/30/2006


Anonymous said...

this would b a most interesting situation to watch in light of the fact the hkg judicial system has always taken pride in being independent of politics.

further, it was the people of hkg who not to long ago told LKY to sod off after he made remarks, in hkg, on how they should listen to what beijing has to say.

for the benefit of those s'poreans who do not know, democracy is alive n well in hkg. their legilative counsel members (MP's) say whats on their mind n r willing to go the distance (1 even got smashed in a McDonalds outlet by hired thugs). the press is absolutely free 2 print what's on its mind. i dream of the day we in s'pore can experience the same.

Matilah_Singapura said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Matilah_Singapura said...

HK was never known as a well-spring for democracy. "Street democracy" is the term I would use to describe it.

However, HK is known for FREEDOM — you can do and own just about anything in HK, if you have the skills and the gumption to do it.

At least the (small) HK govt does what it can to protect the SAR from too much interference by Beijing.

Look carefully: democracy is a natural out growth of FREEDOM in HK. The freedom came FIRST.

Anonymous said...

Well, FEER if falling into Lee's trap with all these appeals and more appeals. What the Lees are doing is to try up FEER's fund. FEER try initially to appeal, appeal rejected and they are charged $24,000.00 dollars. FEER cannot moved on to further appeal until they clear their debt. The next stage will clearly be a "NO" again, and FEER will be charge more if they want to make another appeal up the judiciary ladder.

This common tactic has been used effectively on many other opposition leader as well. A similar trap was set for the Chees, when they were charged for illegal assembly when there were were only 4 people (legally only 5 people consititue illegal assembly and not 4). The Chees appeal on the basis of that technicality, but their appeal was overturned cos the court can changed their own laws anytime. So, the Chee now owes lots of legal fees, and cannot further appeal until they have cleared their debts.

There are many many other examples .... so hopefully FEER is not falling into this trap

Anonymous said...

Why does FEER bother to appeal in the singapore court? They have no assets to speak of here, so even if the case goes ahead and the despots win (a foregone conclusion thanks to the kangaroo court), they can't get anything out of FEER (which is already banned anyway.)

Anonymous said...

Ask any Singaporean what the outcome of the case will be and even the uneducated, young, old and even the people who are "appointed" to ensure the independence of the judiaciary will tell you FEER is wasting its time and money. Why..because we have a first world legal system and we all know how defamatory FEER's article was. Why its much more defamatary then what's being written in Thailand, Malaysia and Austrlia about the great famiLEE.

Anonymous said...

Yes, what's being written in Thailand, Malaysia, Australia or for the matter of fact everywhere else in the world about the great one and his family is about defamatory as calling worst then Marcos but then all these places have a third world judiciary which is so corrupted we cannot expect to get a fair verdict. So we shall not waste our time defending our honour and integrity.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to FEER to have the guts to uphold their principles. Many have simply rolled over and play dead, when they saw that they are up against LKY and gang. Sadly, all these "play dead" move have disastrously embolden LKY & gang to use lawsuits as their overall strategy to silence any hint or comment that in their mind speak ill of them.

Anonymous said...

Well, people who speak ill of them need to be sued. If not for LKY Singapore would still be a third world country, people will be living in slums, there will be famine, inflation, unemployment, plagues. People will be fighting in the streets, killing and eating each other. Look this is what has happened to every other country which did not have the blessing to be gifted with a Lee family to lead the country out of its gloom. Long live the King...

Anonymous said...

!?!?"Long live the King..."?!?!

Aahhh?! A self confessed slave/servant of the Lee family!! This idiot doesn't realise, not everyone wants to be a slave or servant to any party or family. Not everyone wants ANY part of their freedom dictated or suppressed. Slaves, they are always worse than their masters.

Fight on FEER. Show the world that the Lee family is actually building a kingdom for themselves rather than a democratic society. Show the world their true face. HELP US!!!

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:12:01, I think Anon 9:40 is being sarcastic and it in fact mocking Singaporeans

Anonymous said...

anon 440 46, a typical loose bowled singaporean praising his masters. My shitty little stupid brain washed dick head, the Lee King, and his demonic family will eventually steal all the bread from your childrens mouths. If Singapore claims to be hub of hubs, you my friend are hub of stupid cunts. Grow up, take a look at the outside world, its certainly not perfect. But most of it tolerates free speech, and doesn't attempt to poison people in prison AKA Leeson, and now it seems Dr, Chee.