Man arrested in Malaysia over offensive Facebook post

A 25-year-old has been arrested over offensive comments on Islam and Prophet Muhammad made on Facebook but the suspect denies making such statements and that his account was hacked.

A 25-year-old man has been arrested at his house in Malaysia on Wednesday morning over offensive comments posted on Facebook about Islam and Prophet Muhammad.

Citing Selangor state's Klang South district police chief, assistant commissioner of police Mohamad Mat Yusop, local news site The Sun Daily said the man was taken away for investigations under Section 4(1) of the Sedition Act and Section 298A of the Penal Code for causing disharmony, disunity, enmity, hatred or ill-will on grounds of religion.

The assistant commissioner of police said the suspect denied making insulting posts on Facebook through his police report on Tuesday night. The suspect also claimed to have lost a laptop previously, Mohamad said.

According to the article, the suspect had posted a follow-up post on his Facebook wall on Tuesday night. In the message, he apologized for the offensive post but stressed that his account was hacked and the comment was made by the hacker.

The report added that several non-governmental organizations have lodged police reports against the offensive remarks.

While the original defamatory post has been removed, it triggered around nine hate pages on Facebook which condemned the suspect with some some calling for his death, arrest or that he be killed, the report said.

This is not the first arrest in Malaysia over comments on social networks. In 2010, a Facebook user was charged for making statements about church attacks .

The Malaysian government amended its Evidence Act in April 2012. Now, any Internet posts made under an account will automatically be presumed to be published by the account holder even if the account was hacked.

Some Internet users in Malaysia have protested against the amendment through an Internet Blackout Day in August but the act remains unchanged.

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