Lawyer VK Lingam still can't practise following Court of Appeal ruling
Senior lawyer VK Lingam, linked to a video clip alleging a judge-fixing scandal in 2007, remains barred from legal practice.
The Court of Appeal today dismissed his appeal against the Malaysian Bar’s 2015 decision to strike him off the roll of advocates and solicitors.
When contacted today, the Bar’s legal representative Razlan Hadri Zulkifli confirmed the outcome of proceedings before the three-person bench chaired by Court of Appeal judge Lee Swee Seng.
“The Court of Appeal found no error in the (Advocates and Solicitors) Disciplinary Board’s finding against Lingam,” Razlan said.
Razlan added that the bench also ordered Lingam to pay RM30,000 in costs.
The other members of the bench were Court of Appeal judges Lee Heng Cheong and Hashim Hamzah.
Lingam was struck off the roll as an advocate and solicitor by the disciplinary board on Nov 6, 2015.
Lingam was implicated in a judge-fixing scandal when a video clip of him apparently allegedly negotiating the appointment of top judges was made public in 2007.
A royal commission of inquiry was set up in 2008 to probe the matter.
The five-member commission recommended that action be taken against key personalities involved in the scandal – Lingam, former chief justices Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim and Eusoff Chin, Umno leader Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and business tycoon Vincent Tan.
In its 191-page report, the commission recommended that the six be investigated under a slew of laws – the Sedition Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Penal Code, the Prevention of Corruption Act and the Legal Profession Act.
Lingam and a few others mounted legal attempts to challenge the RCI findings, but the Federal Court in September 2011 ruled that the commission’s ruling cannot be challenged.
On May 22, 2018, the Kuala Lumpur High Court denied Lingam’s legal bid to overturn the disciplinary board's decision.
Today’s Court of Appeal decision was in relation to the lawyer’s appeal against the High Court verdict.
Lingam is believed to be residing outside of Malaysia. Previously, he was reported to be in the United Kingdom seeking medical treatment.