Sugarbook founder pleads not guilty in Malaysia to publishing post on 'sugar babies'

IT entrepreneur Chan Eu Boon pleaded not guilty after the charge was read out to him before Magistrate Sabreena Bakar @ Bahari.
IT entrepreneur Chan Eu Boon pleaded not guilty after the charge was read out to him before Magistrate Sabreena Bakar @ Bahari. PHOTO: AFP

SHAH ALAM (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The founder of dating site Sugarbook has been charged at the Magistrate's Court in Malaysia over the publication of a post about "sugar babies" with intention to cause public fear.

IT entrepreneur Chan Eu Boon, 34, pleaded not guilty after the charge was read out to him before Magistrate Sabreena Bakar @ Bahari on Wednesday (Feb 24).

He was accused of publishing a post titled "Top 10 Sugar Baby Universities in Malaysia" on website, http://technave.com, with intention to cause fear or unrest to the public at 10am on Feb 10.

The post was viewed at a public university at 6.26pm on the same day.

The charge carries imprisonment of up to two years or fine or both, upon conviction under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Aliff Asraf Anuar Sharuddin proposed a bail of RM100,000 (S$32,690) on grounds that the offence involved public interest.

Lawyer T. Shashi Devan, who represented the accused, however asked for a lower amount.

He said the amount was unreasonable and that his client was not a flight risk.

The court fixed bail at RM10,000 in one surety and ordered the accused to surrender his passport to the court.

The case is fixed for mention on March 26.

The founder of the dating platform was arrested at a condominium in Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur, on Feb 17.

Selangor Criminal Investigation Department chief SAC Datuk Fadzil Ahmat had said police have received 74 police reports nationwide in connection with this case.

During the initial investigation, the suspect confessed to being the founder of Sugarbook.

On Feb 15, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) blocked access to the Sugarbook website for allegedly breaching the law on the use of network facilities or services.

However, Sugarbook's developer then set up an alternative site to enable its users to access the blocked webpage.

Sugarbook matches "sugar daddies" (older and generally more well-off men) to young women or "sugar babies".

MCMC had said it was monitoring and investigating Sugarbook and would take action against its users and platform owners should they violate the laws.