LAWYER ACQUITTED OF PARKING OFFENCE
Ex-PKR rep wins case against Penang Island City Council
PENANG Island City Council may have to review its parking summons procedures after the magistrate’s court yesterday acquitted lawyer V.S. Raveentharan of parking offences.
Magistrate Mohamad Amin Shahul Hamid said the prosecution failed to prove a prima facie case and there were several technical issues with regards to the case.
“The prosecution failed to present to the court a sample of signature, one of the first and most important exhibits,” he said.
Raveentharan, who is former Batu Uban assemblyman, was accused of illegally parking his car on March 11, 2014, at 10.30am in Jalan Tun Syed Shah Barakbah, an offence under Article 5(1) of MPPP’s Road Transport Order (motorised vehicle parking) 2014.
Representing Raveentharan was lawyer Baljit Singh, who said the council had issued a summons to his client without any proof of his offence.
“They could not prove it was my client who parked the car and they failed to give him the chance to explain. Instead, they issued the summons on his name because he owned the car,” he said outside the court room.
Baljit said the decision was an eye-opener for the people of Penang to take another look at their summonses from the council. He said the decision by the magistrate’s court was historic as it would invalidate the council’s parking summonses issued before.
He said that there was no proof of Raveentharan receiving the summons in the first place.
Baljit said his client would continue to challenge other parkingrelated compounds as the council had indiscriminately fined Penang motorists over the years.
When approached, Raventharan said he had 53 unsettled summonses.
The council was represented by its prosecution officer, Noorazrein Norazlan Ong .
The New Straits Times met several Penang motorists who had received similar summonses issued by the council.
A motorist, who wished to be known as Lim, 43, said he was glad it was clear that the council’s summonses were technically illegal.
“It is good to know, because if you think about it, the council has gotten away with illegally obtaining money.
“It is time for the people to act and take action against them,” he said.
Lim said he would refer to his lawyer if he could get a refund for the summonses he had paid for and for advice on his recent parking ticket.
Another motorist, Nor Khairiah Omar, 38, said she was rushing to a meeting and could not find a parking spot, so she parked by the roadside.
“I made sure my car did not obstruct traffic, so I parked in the alley along a yellow line. I got a ticket today (yesterday) and I plan to pay for it,” she said.
Nor Khairiah said although the court had ruled that the council’s traffic summons were technically incomplete, she knew it was wrong to park next to a yellow line.
“I may be able to get away with it, but my conscience won’t be at peace,” she said.
Former Batu Uban assemblyman V.S Raveentharan (left) with his lawyer Baljit Singh at the George Town magistrate’s court yesterday.