A meat supplying company and two of its directors pleaded not guilty at the Sessions Court in Johor Bahru today to charges of using the halal logo without certification by the authorities early this month.
Raihanah Cold Storage Sdn Bhd was represented by its owners and directors, Rahman Sheikh Abdullah, 44, and his wife Raihanah Kasim, 42, who were also charged in their capacity as owners and directors of another company, Raihanah Enterprise.
They pleaded not guilty to the charges before judge Mohamad Haldar Abdul Aziz.
On the first count, Raihanah Cold Storage, which claimed to be offering halal services, was charged with using an uncertified halal logo on its Isuzu lorry.
On the second charge, Rahman and Raihanah, as owners of Raihanah Enterprise, were charged with committing a similar offence on a Mitsubishi lorry.
They were alleged to have committed the offence at Raihanah Cold Storage Sdn Bhd, Taman Perniagaan Setia in Johor Bahru at about 1pm on Dec 1.
The charge against Raihanah Cold Storage was framed under the Trade Description (Certification and Marking of Halal) Order 2011, which provides for a fine of up to RM200,000 and up to RM500,000 for every second or subsequent offence upon conviction.
Rahman and Raihanah, who were charged in their capacity as directors of the company, face a maximum fine of RM100,000, imprisonment of up to three years, or both. For every second or subsequent offence, they could be fined up to RM250,000 or face up to five years’ jail, or both, if found guilty.
The prosecution, conducted by deputy public prosecutor T Ashvinii, requested bail of RM50,000 with one surety each for the second charge on the grounds that the issue had received wide media coverage and was also raised in Parliament.
Lawyers Lau Kok Guan and Noor Liana Hashim, however, appealed for a lower bail, saying their clients’ company, which has 20 employees, is still in operation and that the couple has four children, aged between 10 and 20.
The court allowed the couple bail of RM40,000 with one surety each and set Jan 19 for mention.