Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the Attorney-General’s Chambers would determine the appropriate action against the two Australian journalists who were detained yesterday, Bernama reported today.
“I can confirm two people have been arrested because they defied police orders.
“We will discuss with the A-G’s Chambers to charge them for obstructing a public servant from obstructing his duty,” he said.
He said the Australia duo’s action was improper as the prime minister’s programme was not an interview or media conference session.
The journalists – Linton Besser, 39, and Louis Eroglu, 51 – tried to approach Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib who was on an official visit to the Darul Ehsan Mosque at Kampung Haji Baki, Kota Sentosa, at 8.35pm last night.
Khalid said the duo had been released on police bail this morning and must stay in the state while the investigation was being carried out.
Khalid said any media whether local or international should maintain ethics while conducting their duties.
“Security control for the prime minister is the police’s task. So we do not want anything untoward happening to him,” he said.
Sally Neighbour, the programme’s executive producer, said on Twitter the staff were arrested after they attempted to ask the prime minister over a “corruption scandal”.
Lawyer Albert Tang, who is representing the journalists, said they have denied any wrongdoing.
“They were just carrying out their duties and asked the prime minister questions. They stopped when they were told to,” Tang told The Malaysian Insider.
Sarawak CID chief Dev Kumar M.M Sree Shunmugan said the journalists had crossed the security line and aggressively tried to approach Najib.
“Both of them were subsequently arrested for failing to comply with police instructions not to cross the security line,” he said in a press statement today.
The journalists arrived in Malaysia on March 5 and reached Kuching on March 12 to cover Najib’s official visit to Sarawak. – March 13, 2016.