KUCHING: A woman, who pleaded guilty to concealing the birth of her daughter by throwing the newborn into a drain, was fined RM5,000 by the Magistrate’s Court here yesterday.
Magistrate Zaiton Anuar imposed this on 21-year-old Afiqah Azman after hearing the social report and examining a proposal submitted by a Social Welfare Department (JKM) officer.
She said JKM officers recommended to the court that the accused be sentenced to a fine as she is now over 21 years old, besides taking into account public interest, case facts and the mitigation of the accused.
“Therefore, the court fined the offender RM5,000 or nine months’ imprisonment if she fails to pay up,” said Zaiton in passing the sentence.
Based on the facts of the case, the woman was arrested while receiving treatment at Sarawak General Hospital (SGH).
The doctor on duty examined her and found that she was suffering from severe bleeding in addition to having signs of childbirth and there was a tear in her private part.
Thus, the doctor suspected that she had given birth, but she denied it and refused to say anything about giving birth.
Her denial however was refuted when the body of a newborn child was found at 7pm in a drain close to her residence in Bandar Baru Samariang.
In mitigation, the woman cried and appealed for minimum penalty because she regretted her actions.
The woman was charged under Section 318 of the Penal Code which provides for a maximum jail term of two years or a fine or both upon conviction.