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Child Custody Fight: Law Gone Blind in Malaysia

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asked on Sep 14, 2010 at 21:04
by   Need Change ASAP
edited on Jun 2, 2016 at 14:00
 
Friday August 13, 2010

I don't want mummy, says girl in custody fight

By M. MAGESWARI

PUTRAJAYA: It was a heart-wrenching scene at the Court of Appeal here when three appellate judges tried to persuade an 11-year-old girl to give her mother a second chance.

Low Bi-Anne had initially refused to meet her mother Tan Siew Siew, 37, when the custody battle case was called up. The mother has been given custody of the child.
However, Bi-Anne, who was in tears, sat close to her father, real-estate negotiator Low Swee Siong, 40.

Upon hearing submissions by the parties, Court of Appeal judge Justice Sulong Matjeraie, who chaired a three-man panel, asked the girl to give her mother a chance to show her love.

"Your mother came all the way from England to see you," he said.

Justice Mohamed Apandi Ali told her: "Your mother took care of you for nine months. Give it a try."

Upon hearing this, Bi-Anne said: "She took care of me for nine months but my father took care of me for 10 years."

Justice Jefrey Tan Kok Wha told the girl: "I am sure (both your parents) love you equally."

The girl then wept and said: "I don't love her."

Lawyer T. Susamma, who acted for the girl's mother, said her client was heartbroken at not having access to her daughter. Susamma applied to the Bench for the girl's father, Low, to surrender her birth certificate and all school records.

Counsel Chan Kah Ling, who represented Low, requested that the court give them 14 days or a month to comply with the order.

Justice Sulong ordered that the birth certificate be given to Tan within seven days.
The couple married on Aug 2, 1999. When they divorced on June 19, 2006, the custody of the girl was given to the father.

After two years, the mother applied for custody.

On Aug 6, 2008, High Court judge Justice Hinshawati Sharif ordered that custody of the girl be given to the mother and the father be given reasonable access. However, the order could not be executed because Bi-Anne did not want to go to her mother.
On July 27, the father appealed to the Court of Appeal against the lower court ruling but later withdrew it. Yesterday was the execution of the High Court order for the custody of the child to the mother.
Published: Monday September 13, 2010 MYT 4:21:00 PM

Court cites dad for contempt for not handing daughter to wife

By M. MAGESWARI

KUALA LUMPUR: A real-estate negotiator has been cited for contempt of court and sent to Sungai Buloh jail for his failure to hand over his 11-year-old daughter to his former wife in a custody battle for the girl.

Family Court Judicial Commissioner Justice Yeoh Wee Siam also fined Low Swee Siong RM20,000 in default two months' jail.

Justice Yeoh said Low would be fined another RM400 for each day he did not surrender his daughter or her passport.

His former wife, London-based restaurant manager Tan Siew Siew, 37, had won the custody of Low Bi-Anne in a High Court ruling in 2008.

In her judgment on Monday, Justice Yeoh said she was not satisfied with the explanation given by Low, 40.

He knows that he should comply with the court order. I had given him the last opportunity to hand over his daughter to his ex-wife.

In her ruling, Justice Yeoh said Low could have exercised his parental supervision by encouraging his daughter to come to court. "It is his duty to comply with the court order," she said.

Justice Yeoh said Low had ignored court orders thrice and that this was contempt of court.

Upon hearing this, Low who stood near the witness box, gripped both hands on his back and looked down.

The judge also dismissed a stay application by Low's lead counsel Ravi Nekoo over the court ruling.

Questioned by Tan's lead counsel Kiran Kaur Dhaliwal Low said he was only trying respect his daughter's wishes.

"I tried my best to persuade her to attend the court."

He said Bi-Anne was now staying at his home in USJ 19, Subang Jaya with his eldest sister and that he did not have enough time to collect her passport that was kept at his mother's house.

Low also said he asked Bi-Anne to come to court but she was frightened, cried and refused to attend the court proceedings on Monday.

When questioned by Ravi, he said Bi-Anne was under Tan's care between Aug 12 and Sept 4 after the girl was handed over to his ex-wife during the Court of Appeal proceedings.
He said Bi-Anne told him that she had attempted to run away from Tan twice because her mother had disallowed her from keeping in touch with him.

She tried to climb out from the window on one occasion. Asked if he could force Bi-Anne to come to court, he said 'no'.

He said he saw Bi-Anne and Tan at a shop on Sept 4 and that the girl later followed him after she cried and held him tightly.

At the court proceedings earlier Monday, Justice Yeoh revealed that Tan had also succeeded in her bid on Thursday to get an order from the Family Court to take Bi-Anne to the United Kingdom.

At the Court of Appeal on Aug 12, three appellate judges had to persuade Bi-Anne to give her mother a second chance.

The couple married in 1999 and divorced in 2006.

The custody of the girl was given to the father but two years later, Tan applied for custody.

On Aug 6, 2008, High Court judge Justice Hinshawati Sharif ordered that custody of the girl be given to the mother and the father be given reasonable access.

However, the order could not be executed because Bi-Anne did not want to go to her mother.

On July 27, the father appealed to the Court of Appeal against the lower court ruling but later withdrew it.
Tuesday September 14, 2010

Dad to pay for ignoring order

By M. MAGESWARI

KUALA LUMPUR: A real-estate negotiator has been cited for contempt of court for failing to hand over his 11-year-old daughter to his former wife in a custody battle for the girl.

Family Court Judicial Commissioner Justice Yeoh Wee Siam fined Low Swee Siong RM20,000 in default of two months' jail.

Justice Yeoh said Low would be fined another RM400 for each day he did not surrender his daughter or her passport.

His former wife, London-based restaurant manager Tan Siew Siew, 37, had won custody of Low Bi-Anne in a High Court ruling in 2008.

In her judgment yesterday, Justice Yeoh said she was not satisfied with the explanation given by Low, 40.

He knows that he should comply with the court order. I have given him the last opportunity to hand over his daughter to his ex-wife.

In her ruling, Justice Yeoh said Low could have exercised his parental supervision by encouraging his daughter to come to court.

"It is his duty to comply with the court order," she said.

Justice Yeoh said Low had ignored court orders thrice and that this was contempt of court.

The judge also dismissed a stay application by Low's lead counsel Ravi Nekoo over the court ruling.

Upon questioning by Tan's lead counsel Kiran Kaur Dhaliwal yesterday, Low said he was only trying respect his daughter's wishes.

"I have tried my best to persuade her to come to court."

Low said he informed Bi-Anne to come to court but she was frightened, cried and refused to attend the court proceedings yesterday.

Questioned by Ravi, he said Bi-Anne was under Tan's care between Aug 12 and Sept 4 after the girl was handed over to his ex-wife during the Court of Appeal proceedings.
He said Bi-Anne told him that she had attempted to run away from Tan twice because her mother had disallowed her from keeping in touch with him.

"She tried to climb out from the window on one occasion. She also tried to get out through the door but failed in both attempts because the alarm went off," he said.

Asked if he could force Bi-Anne to come to court, he said 'no'.

He said he saw Bi-Anne and Tan at a shop on Sept 4 and that the girl had followed him, crying and holding on to him.

At the court proceedings yesterday, Justice Yeoh said Tan had also succeeded in her bid to get an order from the Family Court to take Bi-Anne to Britain.

At the Court of Appeal on Aug 12, three appellate judges had to persuade Bi-Anne to give her mother a second chance.

The couple married in 1999 and divorced in 2006. The custody of the girl was given to the father but two years later, Tan applied for custody.

On Aug 6, 2008, High Court judge Justice Hinshawati Sharif ordered that custody of the girl be given to the mother and the father be given reasonable access. However, the order could not be executed because Bi-Anne did not want to go to her mother.
Two months ago, Low appealed to the Court of Appeal against the lower court ruling but later withdrew it.
Published: Tuesday September 14, 2010 MYT 2:20:00 PM

Dad pays fine, released from prison

By M. MAGESWARI

KUALA LUMPUR: Real estate negotiator Low Swee Siong, cited for contempt of court for failing to hand over his daughter to his former wife, has been released from Kajang Prison after a close friend paid the RM20,000 fine imposed by the Family Court. Low was released at 1pm Tuesday.

Family Court Judicial Commissioner Justice Yeoh Wee Siam had on Monday fined Low RM20,000 in default of two months' jail.

Justice Yeoh had said Low would be fined another RM400 for each day he did not surrender his daughter or her passport.

His former wife, London-based restaurant manager Tan Siew Siew, 37, had won custody of Low Bi-Anne in a High Court ruling in 2008.

At the Court of Appeal on Aug 12, three appellate judges had to persuade Bi-Anne to give her mother a second chance.

The couple married in 1999 and divorced in 2006. The custody of the girl was given to the father but two years later, Tan applied for custody.

On Aug 6, 2008, High Court judge Justice Hinshawati Sharif ordered that custody of the girl be given to the mother and the father be given reasonable access. However, the order could not be executed because Bi-Anne did not want to go to her mother.

Two months ago, Low appealed to the Court of Appeal against the lower court ruling but later withdrew it.
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answered on Nov 16, 2010 at 08:12
by   Henry
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:10
 
I am very familiar with family law in UK.

The Malaysian judgement will never be acceptable here. The judges who made this decision are STUPID, have not considered the Welfare of the child. If the child leaves to UK, I doubt if the father can ever see his child again. In UK, the mother is regarded as the superior parent and the Women's Aid in UK is a powerful feminist organization. Many fathers in UK and Ireland have been denied access to their children. 

The Legal principle in Europe embodied in the European court of Human rights is the Welfare of the child is PARAMOUNT.  Removing a child from her stable environment of the primary parent, relatives and friends would cause a huge physical and psychological trauma. This legal principle has been a factor in NOT allowing a parent who moves to a different country getting custody of a child.

A parent who has deserted a child for 10 years is an UNFIT parent. If she really wants to be part of her child's life, she should move back to Malaysia and try to establish relationships.  But I believe this woman has a local husband or boyfriend.  A Malaysian court order may be applicable in UK, but is a long road if the mother seeks to prevent access in UK to the father. The possibility of the child resorting to drugs, bad company etc in UK are very very high, just to spite the mother. And in UK, if the social workers get involved... the father and his family are unlikely to see his daughter.

I think the father probably has a second rate lawyer who has lost this case for him.

Good luck.
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answered on Nov 23, 2010 at 21:04
by   Alongbattle
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:13
 
There is always two side to the story. Before we know the truth, its best not to speculate. I'm going through a divorce with my wife and we have a 16 month old daughter. I'm working overseas and she has moved back to KL. She has requested for sole custody while I get access which I do not have a problem. The problem is she refused to allow me to bring the child back to my hometown (not KL) for holiday alone nor overseas nor allow the child to spend overnight stays with me? Is this reasonable access and what is the real intention with this I often asked? Isn't the welfare of the child paramount even though two adults cannot live in harmony any longer?

I question very often on this motive only to be told that "my lawyer had advised me so or just leave the matter to the lawyer." As a single parent, I would not have subject the other parent to such treatment and unfortunately in our society there are still many able, caring single fathers who are subject to pure idiotic mindset of the other partner who believe in using the child as a pawn or bargaining chip.

Ever wonder why some parent had to resort to snatching the child? Because of the inequality of our system and pure stupidity of the other parent. I am not going to this extreme measures but hopefully sense and sensibility will prevail and the daughter will grow up knowing daddy's fought hard to be see her and be given reasonable access by the mother. One day she will see the truth.

Do I have trust and faith in family lawyers? Pure no.. I agree on one of the earlier post, family lawyer should have compassion and provide advise professionally. I welcome comments from the legal fraternity. My battle continues.
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answered on Nov 23, 2010 at 22:12
by   Sillyman
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:19
 
@alongbattle

At least you know where your wife went to.

My ex wife bring my one year old daughter move to Singapore and married a Singaporean without my consent. They didn't even inform me where they stay and I didn't see my daughter for almost 4 months. On my last visit, she just told me she is going to China for business trip and send my daughter to her mother's house for 3 weeks and told me not to disturb her parent before she is back from China. After that I went to her house which I transferred to her name, it was sold. I had not choice but to ask her parent, they refused to talk to me and ask me go away. My ex wife just send me an email tell me she has remarry and move to Singapore don look for her and don dream I could see my daughter again because her daughter has new daddy to replace me. Hope I will let go two of them. What should I do? What can I do?
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answered on Nov 23, 2010 at 23:25
by   alongbattle
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:31
 
@sillyman

My comments goes to all those parents who are being alienated irrespective of gender. Unfortunately according to statistics, the alienated parent are often the father. I empathise with your situation. I presume that your divorce is not finalised and the decree nisi not granted? If so report this to the authority in Singapore if that's where she got married.

I have no sympathy for parent who tries to alienate the other parent provided the subjected is not abusive or a threat and have been providing child support and alimony. If these are the case, there are no reason for them to disallow contact and this is done for all selfishness.

Blood is thicker than water my friend. Just keep in contact with your daughter whatever it takes and she will one day understand that you are the victim and you have not stopped searching for her. Have hope and pray. Think positively and all will be okay. Forget about your ex - lives goes on. The truth will prevail.

I just discovered an organisation - www.pemalik.org - which maybe of help to you.

Am also trying to get them to mediate my case.
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answered on Nov 24, 2010 at 14:01
by   Sillyman
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:38
 
@alongbattle

I had gotten the decree absolute last year. I was given visitation right of 3 hours a week but she only give me 1 hour a week in the past and now I can't even see my daughter at all. What should I do then?
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answered on Nov 24, 2010 at 18:33
by   alongbattle
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:47
 
I would suggest that you consult your previous family law legal rep if you are satisfied with the services rendered. Otherwise appoint another to look into your case since there is a clear violation of the Joint Petition. Also you were not very clear as to the information given. Did she remarry before/after the issuance of Decree Absolute? She can't if it is before. Finding proof if she has registered her marriage will be difficult unless you are prepared to hire a PI to do this for you. Consult your lawyer since they have their panel of PIs.

I would also ask if there are any concerns from the court on your status and why would the court grant 3 hours visitation to you? have you acted in a hostile way or abusive in the past? These maybe ground for the judge to restrict visitation. You need to stay cool and focus at all times even if it's being provoked. If you are aggressive in nature and is finding it hard to contain this, then seek professional help.

Try to find means to keep in contact with your child and show your daughter the fatherly love. Remember to keep your cool no matter how hard the other party is trying to provoke the situation by making unnecessary remarks or actions.
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answered on Nov 24, 2010 at 19:55
by   Sillyman
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:51
 
@alongbattle

The 3 hours is not granted by court it was part of the agreement state in JP signed and court approved it. I did ask a lawyer for my case, the lawyer ask me to give up because my ex wife is in another country. First of all, I have to find out where is she. She quote me range from RM10,000 to RM30,000 as legal fee, how am I afford to pay? I am a normal working class people and I don't know how to find out where is she? Please help me?
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answered on Nov 25, 2010 at 00:09
by   alongbattle
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 07:53
 
This is a battle you have to make alone. You have to decide if it is worth engaging a lawyer to investigate re your ex wife remarriage. For a start the marriage registry is a start. if you can find this forum to share your issue, I am sure you are smart enough to start investigating the process and procedures in Singapore. I cannot understand why you have agreed to a 3 hour visitation right in the first place.

Go to the police with the court order and tell them you are trying to locate your child whom you believe is now residing in Singapore. If you know where she works, creating a scene at her workplace can be effective and if she doesn't want this to escalate, she will be able to let you see your child. Threaten her with lodging a police report. Remember do not overreact. Use the law to your advantage.

You have to search a similar forum in Singapore where they will be many who could contribute and provide insights. Have you used some of the social website to track someone down? Facebook maybe a good start.

I have provided enough guidance for you to start your search. Good luck.
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answered on Jan 1, 2011 at 17:27
by   Anonymous
edited Jun 4, 2016 at 08:02
 
People, take heed..! Look at what's happening in the Malaysian legal system.. call it sound judgement. Surely, those in England and everywhere else got every reason to laugh at Malaysia. Because Malaysia boleh! Lawyers on both sides laughing all their way to the banks too.. If you read this then please spread the word.. hopefully your small contribution will do a great benefit to our society.
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answered on Jan 1, 2011 at 17:38
by   twenty_eleven
edited Jun 9, 2016 at 08:13
 
This is now a case about how to undo the damage created by the predecessors and a lousy system created for those seeking non-Muslims... A major overhaul is needed and it will not take place without admitting fault or weakness in the system... One idiot first made a decision then the others just followed blindly and cover-up for the earlier ones... Just think about it is thee a purpose to go to court to seek justice... that's Malaysia boleh for you!
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