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PETALING JAYA – A total of 7,485 sets of computerised gambling machines worth about RM3.7 million that were seized by the Selangor police within a six-year period were disposed off in the compound of the Ara Damansara Police Station, here today.

Selangor Deputy Police Chief, DCP Datuk Mohd Fuad Abdul Latiff said all the computerised gambling machines were case exhibits seized during police operations in the state from 2010 until 2016.

“All these cases had been presented in court and all the case exhibits had been directed by the courts to be disposed off,” he told reporters after witnessing the disposal process of the goods.

Also present at the event were the Deputy Chief of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Selangor, ACP Yahya Abd Rahman, Petaling Jaya District Police Chief, ACP Mohd Zani Che Din and the Magistrate of the Petaling Jaya Court, Mohd Kamil Nizam. – BERNAMA

ALOR SETAR – Some 141 live pangolins of the ‘Manis Javanica’ variety that were believed to be smuggled abroad, were seized by the Kedah Wildlife Department and the police in a raid on a house in Taman Desa Seraya, yesterday evening.

Kedah Wildlife Department director Muhammad Ali Che Aman said, the seizure was made following a tip-off received by the police on a premises used to store pangolins before they were sold.

“A team of seven policemen and four wildlife department staff carried out a raid on the premises involved and found the pangolins, a protected species under Wildlife Conservation Act 2010 (Act 716). In the raid, a Chinese man who rented the house was not at home. Its owner was then called to give a statement for further investigation,” he said in a statement today.

According to Muhammad Ali, the case is being investigated under Section 68(2)(a) which provides for a fine of between RM50,000 and RM100,000, or a jail term of up to three years, or both, if convicted.

Meanwhile, Kota Setar police chief ACP Mohd Rozi Jidin said, also seized were items such as baskets, nets and trollies believed to be connected to the case. – BERNAMA

JOHANNESBURG – World’s third penis transplant has been successfully performed on a 40-year-old man in South Africa by doctors from Stellenbosch University (SU) and the Tygerberg Academic Hospital in Cape Town.

This is the second successful penis transplant performed in South Africa after the first operation in December 2014 by the same team.

The 40-year-old recipient is reported to have lost his penis 17 years ago due to complications after traditional circumcision.

It took the doctors, led by Professor André van der Merwe, nine and a half hours to perform the transplant on April 21, local news portal Health24 reported.

“He is certainly one of the happiest patients we have seen in our ward. He is doing remarkably well … There are no signs of rejection and all the reconnected structures seem to be healing well,” Van der Merwe said.

Within six months, the recipient will regain full functions of his new organ which has a colour discrepancy because he is a black man and the donor is white.

“Unfortunately we could not find a donor of the same race. In this case the donor is white and the recipient is black,” one of the team members Dr Amir Zarrabi told Health24, adding that the colour discrepancy will be later corrected with medical tattooing.

He expressed confidence that they will perform more successful transplants in the future.

“The loss of a penis from traditional circumcision is big, and we want to create sustainable programmes to help these people,” he added.

The second penis transplant in the world was performed in May 2016 on a 64-year-old man at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston in the United States. – BERNAMA

SHAH ALAM – Police detained five suspects including a government servant who worked as general clerk and seized ganja worth RM107,000 in three separate raids in the Klang Valley, on Thursday and Friday (May 18 and 19).

Selangor Narcotics Crime Investigation Division chief ACP Amarjit Singh Cher Singh said the male clerk, in his 20s, was arrested while driving a Myvi car, in a raid in Serdang, around 9.30pm, on Friday.

“We found two blocks of compressed dried leaves believed to be ganja weighing 1,971.3g and worth RM6,000.

“Initial investigation also revealed that the clerk distributed drugs for the local market,” he said in a press conference at the state police contingent headquarters here today.

He said following interrogation of the first suspect, police arrested a woman, in her 20s, and confiscated 34 slabs as well as four plastic packets of ganja leaves, weighing 29kg and valued at RM90,000, in a raid on a condominium unit in Seri Kembangan, on the same day. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – In just 48 hours, national discus thrower Muhammad Irfan Shamsuddin has once again broken the national record with a 61.56m throw in a championship held in Turnov, Czech Republic.

Muhammad Irfan had just set a 61.10m record at the Hallesch Werfertage Championship in Halle, Germany, on Monday.

The 22-year-old athlete made the record throw in his fourth attempt.

This is a major boost for the athlete from Negeri Sembilan who is looking to defend the gold medal at the 29th SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur this August.

In the 2015 SEA Games in Singapore, he won the gold with a 56.62m throw. – BERNAMA

JOHOR BAHRU – The Johor Office of the Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Ministry (KPDNKK) has seized 76 copies of pirated software and six computers estimated to be worth RM741,300 in two separate raids in Ulu Tiram, here, two days ago.

Johor KPDNKK chief enforcement officer, Aris Mamat said the raids were carried out on May 22 and 23 following complaints from the Business Software Alliance (BSA) about software piracy conducted in two business premises in Ulu Tiram.

“All the raids conducted have received an alert from BSA where we seized the pirated software brands Adobe, Autodesk and Microsoft which were all registered under BSA.

The ministry will continue its efforts to protect intellectual property from being misused by irresponsible parties under the Copyright Act 1987. The ministry will not compromise with any business premises engaged in piracy,” he said in a statement here today ,

According to him, any business premises, organisation or individual found in possession and using pirated software shall be punishable under Section 41 (1) (d) of the Copyright Act 1987, namely a fine of up to RM20,000 for each pirated software in addition to five years’ jail or both if convicted.

“In a study conducted by the BSA in 2015, it was found there are still many users of pirated software in Malaysia where the installation rate of pirated software is 53 percent with a commercial value of US$456 million (US$1 = RM4.30). – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Police have detained a man to assist in the investigation into the disappearance of Pastor Raymond Koh Keng Joo in Petaling Jaya since Feb 13.

Without disclosing where the suspect comes from and his age, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the man was arrested last week in the northern part of the peninsula.

“So far, only one suspect has been detained and I cannot reveal more on the matter.

“We will not close this case and I stress that PDRM (Royal Malaysian Police) investigates all cases and that is our task,” he told a news conference after the launching of a blood donation drive held in conjunction with the 210th Police Day celebration in Bukit Aman, here.

Khalid said in investigating the missing pastor case, police faced difficulty during the preliminary investigation due to interference by certain quarters.

“The interference had impaired the case investigation. I had informed to let us first investigate this case and not to give it too much publicity….when there’s too much publicity, there can arise many flaws,” he said.

Khalid said the investigation was not just focused on pastor Koh’s disappearance but also on claims by the public that he was carrying out activities to turn Muslim individuals into apostates.

“We need to investigate every police report received to ensure justice and not raise questions among the public,” he added.

Meanwhile, three activists, Thomas Fann, Sevan Doraisamy and Rama Ramanathan from the Citizen Action Group on Enforced Disappearance (CAGED) were today called by Bukit Aman police to assist in the investigation into the disappearance of Amri Che Mat, pastor Koh, and Joshua Hilmy and his wife Ruth.

CAGED spokesman, Fann said they were called to the federal police headquarters following their statements on the organisation at a press conference on May 5.

“We were asked more than 20 questions on CAGED and on those related to the reported missing person cases.

“We only answered what we felt we should and we will continue to follow closely the reported cases of these missing persons until they are resolved,” he said. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – The strategic business plans developed by DRB-HICOM Berhad (DRB-HICOM) and China’s Zhejiang Geely Holdings Group. Co Ltd (Geely) will relive Proton’s glory, said Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani.

Following the strategic partnership, he said Proton would emerge as a formidable automative player in the Malaysian, ASEAN and global markets.

“The signing ceremony between DRB-HICOM and Geely Holdings marks a significant milestone for Proton and the country. Our very own and much-loved brand now has a real chance in making a comeback, a huge one I hope.

“As a national car, the government will be here to watch and to support the future of Proton any way we can,” he said before the signing ceremony between DRB-HICOM and Geely Holdings here today.

The strategic partnership is part of the condition placed by the government for Proton to received RM1.1 billion reimbursement from the company’s RM3.5 billion research and development spending.

Johari said there was nothing wrong for Proton to have alliance and partnership.

“In the automative world, it is very common. In fact, TATA partners with Land Rover and Jaguar, BMW partners with Mini and Rolls-Royce, and Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi are all in one big alliance,” he said.

Johari said Proton has been in a highly challenging situation over the last few years following the declining sales and cash flow constraint.

“Therefore, with a strategic partner, Proton will be able to alleviate the brand value and consumer confidence, access to the latest technology, achieve higher economies of scale and ability to access bigger market beyond Malaysia,” he said.

With the Head of Agreement today, that both parties agreed with the terms, Johari said government would facilitate to make sure Proton would remain a national car.

He said Geely, as best automotive player in China and among the best in the world, would give assistance to Proton to become the number one brand in Malaysia, ASEAN and also China.

“We want to make sure the entire value chain of vendors and suppliers to be given priority to participate in these development. With Geely’s experience in developing the vendors and suppliers, that will benefit us in terms of volume… not only supply of cars or parts for Malaysia’s market, but also the market where Geely is,” he said.

On retrenchment, Johari said DRB-HICOM and Geely had assured that they would keep the entire team and jointly manage Proton.

“I don’t see the needs to do any retrenchment because this strategic partner will bring the cars and give the right volume,” he said.

Geely Group Executive Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer Daniel Donghui Li said Malaysia and Southeast Asia were an important location for the company’s future growth.

He said the company aimed to sell three million cars annually by 2020 and the region was targeted to contribute 500,000 car sales.

“With Proton and Lotus joining the Geely portfolio of brands, we strengthen out global footprint and develop a beachhead in Southeast Asia,” he said.

Last year, Geely sold a combined 1.3 million vehicles worldwide.

DRB-Hicom Bhd Group Managing Director Datuk Seri Syed Faisal Albar said the strategic partnership with Geely would ease the capital commitment of DRB-Hicom for Proton, as well as the commitment for research and development.

He said the deal also excluded land assets outside Tanjung Malim, Perak, including Shah Alam which would be transferred to DRB-Hicom in the future at a fair price after relocating all its manufacturing operations to Tanjung Malim.

He said the land asset could then be developrf by DRB-Hicom and thus, would bringsmore revenue to the company.

Nevertheless, he said the relocation process was only expected to take place within five years.

On the disposal of Lotus, he said the British carmaker was sold at 100 million British pound sterling to Geely, which would hold 51 per cent equity, while Etika Automotive Sdn Bh, 49 per cent.

Etika Automotive is own by the same shareholders of Etika Strategi Sdn Bhd, a company that holds a 51 per cent stake in DRB-Hicom, he said.

HSBC is Geely’s financial advisor in the transaction, while Quantephi Sdn Bhd is the financial advisor for DRB-Hicom.

Geely’s and DRB-Hicom are expected to sign the Definitive Agreement in July 2017. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – The National Dispute Resolution Chamber (NDRC) to be established next year will not replace the Status Committee of the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM).

Professional Footballers Association of Malaysia (PFAM) chief executive officer Izham Ismail said the NDRC would reduce the workload of the Status Committee by solving the contract issues of footballers.

“The NDRC will enhance problem solving regarding the contract of players which previously falls under the Status Committee.

The PFAM and FAM are in the midst of finalising the membership of the NDRC. We expect it to be finalised next year.”

The establishment of the NDRC was among the initiatives under Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by PFAM and FAM, here, today.

Izham signed the MoU on behalf of PFAM while FAM was represented by its secretary-general Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin.

The ceremony was witnessed by FAM president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim.

Meanwhile, Tunku Ismail praised the efforts undertaken by both parties to enhance the welfare of footballers in the country through the MoU.

“I think this (MoU) will benefit all parties. I hope this agreement will be the ice breaking of a new era that will benefit all organisations and also the footballers in our country,” he added. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – DRB-HICOM Bhd (DRB-HICOM) has reached an agreement with China-based Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. Ltd (Geely Holding) for the Chinese car group to acquire a 49.9 per cent equity in Proton Holdings Bhd.

DRB-HICOM currently owns 100 per cent of the manufacturer of the first national car.

The agreement was signed today and witnessed by Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri
Johari Abdul Ghani.

The deal will enable Proton to tap into Geely Holding’s vast range of platforms
and powertrains and will also enable Proton to have access to existing markets of the Chinese car maker, as well as, right-hand drive markets in South-East Asia, said DRB-Hicom in a statement today.

DRB-HICOM Group Managing Director Datuk Seri Syed Faisal Albar said the Proton brand would remain present and would grow significantly with the new foreign strategic partner on board.

“Our intention was always to ensure the revitalisation of the Proton name plate. It was
Malaysia’s first national car brand and has more than 30 years of history. This deal will be the catalyst to elevate a brand that Malaysians resonate with,” said Syed Faisal.

Meanwhile Geely Holding Group Executive Vice President and Chief Finance Official Daniel Donghui Li said: “With Proton and Lotus joining the Geely Group portfolio of brands, we have strengthened
our global foot print and developed a beach head in South East Asia.”

He added that Geely Holding had full confidence in Proton’s and would fully respect the brand’s history and culture to restore Proton to its former glory with the support of Geely’s innovative technology and management resources.

“We also aim to unleash the full potential of Lotus Cars and bring it into a new phase of development, thanks to our experience accumulated through Volvo Car’s revitalisation,” said Daniel.

The deal would see Proton disposing the entire equity in British carmaker Lotus to Geely and Etika Automotive Sdn Bhd, which will see the group exit from the sports car segment.

Geely Holdings, which also owns Volvo Car Corporation and The London Taxi
Company, is one of the leading passenger vehicle car makers in China.

It already has facilities across the globe, including 16 manufacturing plants, seven design studios and five research & development centres.

The deal with Proton will offer Geely access into the key ASEAN market and also R&D and manufacturing presence in the region.

“Both parties expect to sign the Definitive Agreement in July 2017,” said the statement. – BERNAMA