The Shah Alam Magistrate's Court today granted a discharge not amounting to acquittal (DNAA) to an Amanah leader facing a charge of sexually assaulting a woman.
Magistrate Mohamad Suffian Jaafar allowed the prosecution's request to grant the DNAA to Faiz Fadzil, a former Penang assemblyman who was recently appointed as chairman of the Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia.
Faiz, 46, who lost the Permatang Pasir state seat in the recent state election, had claimed trial to the charge under Section 354 of the Penal Code, which deals with the offence of assault or use of criminal force to a person with intent to outrage the person's modesty.
The charge carries a maximum jail sentence of 10 years, a fine or whipping, or any two.
With the DNAA, Faiz's bail of RM10,000 was also returned.
In March 2021, MalaysiaNow reported that a 31-year-old woman had lodged a report at a police station in Subang Jaya accusing the politician of fondling her.
She said she first met the politician in January, followed by a second meeting where she agreed to his offer of a dinner treat for her birthday.
She said she agreed to go with him as she "felt honoured".
However, she claimed that the man tried to hug and fondle her in his car before telling her to keep what had happened to herself.
She said she had been "emotionally distressed" since then.
Faiz, the son of the late PAS president Fadzil Noor, denied the allegations.
In her response today, the complainant Yuslaini Azmi expressed surprise at the decision, saying she had not been informed about it.
"Today I got a message from a WAO (Women's Aid Organisation) social worker stating that my case is DNAA. It seems that there is political interference since the court has mentioned an application by the defendant to withdraw the case, but I have not received any letter until now," she said, sharing a screenshot of a WhatsApp message on her Facebook.