Court dismisses drug courier's bid to avoid caning

The High Court yesterday dismissed Malaysian drug courier Yong Vui Kong's application for a judicial review to avoid caning.

His lawyer, Ms Violet Netto, will also have to personally foot the bill of $2,500 for legal costs.

In a statement issued yesterday, the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) said the costs had been incurred by her "failure to conduct proceedings with reasonable competence and expedition".

Yong's death sentence was commuted last November to life imprisonment and 15 strokes of the cane. He was initially sentenced to death in 2008 for trafficking 47.27g of diamorphine.

On March 4 this year, the Court of Appeal dismissed an attempt by Yong, 26, to quash his caning sentence.

On March 13, Ms Netto, who is from law firm L. F. Violet Netto Advocates and Solicitors, made a judicial review application on Yong's behalf for an order that would prohibit his caning.

The AGC subsequently applied to strike out the application on April 14, calling it an abuse of process of the court.