Malaysia Law: 'You Can't Defend Yourself From A Robber By Using A Bigger Knife Than His' - The Coverage

Malaysia Law: ‘You Can’t Defend Yourself From A Robber By Using A Bigger Knife Than His’

All hell has let loose on Facebook after a debate on whether or not it is against the law to protect yourself by killing an armed robber, sparked into wildfire following an incident where a man killed a robber to protect his family- and is now facing trial in court (The Zulklifi incident where he killed a robber to protect his family)

For the story of the Zulklifi incident, click here.

The status uploaded to Facebook by user Faisal Hamdi, quoting an interview with lawyer Datuk Haaziq Pillay and Ally Iskandar on the topic of ‘Defending Yourself from Threat” on Malaysia Hari Ini.

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The original post by Faisal Hamdi on his Facebook profile

“The limits of defending yourself, should a thief or robber draw and use a small knife of sorts against you, the victim can’t retaliate and protect himself with a bigger knife. If the robber had no intention to kill, it means that the victim is not allowed to attack the robber in self-defense to the point the robber loses his life. Err, should that be the case, victims will probably lose their lives by the time they finish choosing a knife and guessing the robber’s intentions,” said Faisal in his Facebook post that was uploaded around 8.05 yesterday morning.

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The statement made received negative criticism from netizens who felt that the law was too technical in their beliefs- especially for something that was so simple; defend yourself should someone threaten to hurt you.

“The technicality in their statements are too complicated and ridiculous- it’s like following a manual. In moments of panic, nobody has the time to think of such technicalities and backlash,” commented Facebook user Kamal Rabah.

“When a robber breaks in, we’ll have to interview them and ask them for the intentions of their visit, the size of the knife they brought and whether or not they have intentions of killing the victims before deciding what to do,” joked Facebook user Noor Asyikin.

According to Datuk Haazig, the laws allows every citizen to maintain their right to protect themselves and their property from those with ill intentions. However, there are a few limitations to keep in mind.

“For example, should the law state that we use the right to defend ourselves as a defense. Someone breaks into my house with the intention to rob but only has a knife while I have a gun- that wouldn’t be fair.

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“The law states that I must be in fear and be certain that there is a genuine risk against me and my family in order to validate manslaughter during self-defense. In the state situation, I might take measures to hurt or even kill the robber, but only with intent to protect my family.

“I can however instead, release a few warning shots to warn the robber. Should he continue to charge ahead and try to kill me, I have every right to shoot and kill him. However, I can’t open my front door upon seeing a robber trying to break in, and fire shots at him. No, the law doesn’t allow it,” he said.

According to him, netizens shouldn’t comment baseless assumptions regarding the topic on Facebook- as they may not have the evidence nor entire story of what happened, unlike prosecutors who do.

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