Drug Offences and the Death Penalty in Malaysia: Fair Trial Rights and Ramifications
There are significant fair trial issues for more than 1,000 people on death row in Malaysia – including a reversal of the presumption of innocence in drug trials and significant barriers to legal assistance.
This report has exposed significant flaws in the Malaysian system, that cannot be fixed with minimal or piecemeal reforms; we have already seen the limitations of this approach in the shortcomings of the 2017 amendment. The only thing that can be done at this point is abolition of the death penalty, and drug policy reform.
Malaysia has already taken important and bold steps in this direction and could in this way become an example for other countries in the region, so we hope this report will inform discussions and help policymakers take this last decisive step.
This research was undertaken by the Monash University Anti-Death Penalty Clinic and the Anti-Death Penalty Asia Network, with the support of Harm Reduction International.