Malaysia convicts first person under controversial legislation

Danish man first person to be charged, convicted under Anti-Fake News Act

Police disputed the claims, made in a YouTube video circulated by Sulaiman, and said they took just eight minutes to respond to the gunshots.

Under Malaysia's Anti-Fake News Act 2018 which covers "news, information, data and reports which is or are wholly or partly false", Sulaiman has been charged with publishing false content with "ill intent", the Guardian reported.

In an unprecedented move, a Danish man on Monday was jailed for a week in Malaysia for breaking a law against "fake news".

The second charge carries a lighter sentence of up to one year's prison and a maximum RM50,000 fine.

A Danish citizen has become the first person to be punished under the new Anti-Fake News Act, over a YouTube video he had posted regarding the fatal shooting of Dr Fadi Mohammed Al Batsh, a Palestinian imam shot near his residence in Setapak two weeks ago. Sulaiman said his actions were not meant to cause harm, and apologized for posting the video in a "moment of anger".

"I made a mistake". I apologise, I do not know anything about Malaysia. Sulaiman said he was on a 10-day visit to the country when he was arrested.

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Salah reportedly said he didn't have money to pay the fine and will have to serve another month in jail instead.

Malaysia's inspector-general of police, Mohamad Fuzi Harun, said a day after the shooting that their records showed a distress call was received at 6:41 a.m. and a patrol vehicle arrived at the scene eight minutes later.

Fake news is not just a problem experienced in the United States, but in other countries as well where it has been found that the propagation of fake news could somehow affected elections. The law applies to offenders outside Malaysia and includes foreigners, if the country or any of its citizens are affected.

Governments elsewhere in Southeast Asia, including Singapore and the Philippines, have also proposed laws aimed at clamping down on the spread of "fake news", to the dismay of media rights advocates.

Media company Mkini Dotcom launched a legal challenge against the law on the grounds that it violates free speech and civil liberty.

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