Political graphic designer Fahmi Reza has once again made an appearance in the headlines for getting in trouble with his controversial works, but this time it’s an update on an older case:
In February this year, Fahmi Reza was charged under Section 233(1)(a) of the CMA, when he allegedly insulted PAS with one of his designs.
The prosecution stated that he uploaded the post on 1 June 2021 with the intention to annoy others, in which the artist pleaded not guilty.
Fahmi would face a maximum fine of RM50,000 or a one-year jail sentence if he was convicted.
The controversial piece is believed to have been produced as a reaction to the statement of several PAS ministers that the regulation of the sale of alcohol be tightened in Kuala Lumpur.
The post came after the government allowed beer factories to continue operating during MCO in 2021. However, it later ordered the factories to shut down their operations.
The graphic in question showed a picture of a can of Carlsberg brand alcohol displayed with a beverage can bearing the PAS logo with the caption “Carlsberg for all”.
Previously, Fahmi claimed trial to a charge of insulting former health minister Dr Adham Baba on Twitter.
The tweet touched on the 2021 Cabinet policy that allowed ministers to observe a three-day quarantine, instead of 10 days, after they returned from overseas.
Meanwhile, human rights group Article 19 had criticised the latest charge against Fahmi, labelling it a witch hunt. Nalini Elumalai called for the government to stop harassing and intimidating Fahmi.
But today, the KL Sessions Court has granted satire artist Fahmi Reza a discharge not amounting to an acquittal over the allegedly insulting design.
Fahmi 1 – 0 PAS
Pada bulan Februari aku dihadapkan ke mahkamah atas tuduhan menyakitkan hati PAS dengan poster satira ni.
— Fahmi Reza (@kuasasiswa) October 14, 2022
The court found that the charges were baseless, groundless and defective. The artist will also receive his bail money of RM3,000 back.
“Today the judge declared the charges unfounded, groundless and flawed, and dropped the charges against me!” he wrote in his caption, appropriately ending it off with #SatireIsNotACrime.