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Thursday, September 16, 2004

India Times > Malaysia's Anwar loses case against political ban

PUTRAJAYA (MALAYSIA): Malaysian rebel politician Anwar Ibrahim failed on Wednesday in a final court bid to erase his criminal record, leaving a royal pardon as his only option for a swift return to politics.

MalaysiaÂ’s highest court, which two weeks ago quashed a sodomy conviction against the former deputy premier and freed him from almost six years in jail, denied a request to re-hear his appeal against his last remaining criminal conviction, for corruption.

“We would say that there is no fraud or suppression of evidence and neither is there any new evidence before the court which merits the court to entertain a reopening or rehearing of the case,” judge Alauddin Mohamad Sheriff said.

Anwar has already served his sentence on the corruption count, which landed him in jail in 1999 and sparked violent street protests. He was accused of abuse of power in trying to cover up the sodomy investigation.

The conviction prevents him under Malaysian law from standing for party office or parliament until April Â’08. Mr Anwar has said both convictions were trumped up by former leader Mahathir Mohamad.


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