Brothers’ appeal in assault case tossed out

Fadley Faisal

The High Court yesterday dismissed an appeal against sentence by two brothers, who were involved in the assault of a secondary school teacher in 2017.

Mohammad Yusirwan bin Yussof and Mohammad Yadiy Yusranshah bin Yussof, who hired lawyer Sheikh Noordin Sheikh Mohammad of Messrs Sheikh Noordin Mohammad & Associates, contended the Magistrate’s Court’s sentence of 24 weeks’ jail to each of them.

They claimed having extenuating factors in the case and mitigating factors to warrant either a fine or a probation and community service order, instead of a custodial sentence.

Counsel Sheikh Noordin put forward that the offences were not premeditated; that the teacher had behaved in a “somewhat confrontational” manner, with the punching and kicking from both applicants occurring during a commotion, and was not a sustained attack.

He also highlighted that his clients have a clean record, while Mohammad Yusirwan has “shown a good level of discipline” in the army and has never been charged with any military offences.

Chief Justice Dato Seri Paduka Steven Chong said that the Magistrate was right in taking a serious view of the offences, and agreed that “teachers in performing their duties deserve the full protection of the law from physical or verbal abuse”.

“Deterrence must be the dominant consideration when it comes to sentencing in cases of this nature in the public interest,” the Chief Justice concluded, while establishing that the sentence was neither excessive nor wrong in principle. Deputy Public Prosecutor Nor Hafizah binti Ahmad represented the Public Prosecutor as respondent.

At 10am on September 16, 2017, Mohammad Yusirwan, the parent of a student at Sayyidina Abu Bakar Secondary School (SMSAB) in Berakas, punched teacher Muhammad Afandi bin Sahdun on the left side of his face in the school conference room. He also assaulted Muhammad Afandi by making pointing gestures towards him, while shouting.

Mohammad Yadiy Yusranshah, meanwhile, kicked Muhammad Afandi in the lower abdomen. He also made pointing gestures towards the teacher, while shouting.

Videos capturing the incident were circulated widely on several social media platforms at the time.