MALAYSIA— A Malaysian Chinese youth who abused and set fire to a stray dog last month, will be caned lightly seven times in open court as part of his punishment.

The 19-year-old youth, Braden Yap Hong Sheng, was charged with animal cruelty for causing undue pain to a brown female dog in front of premises at Jalan Impian Emas 22, Taman Impian Emas, Skudai, at 1.49 am on 27 March.

Yap pleaded guilty to the charge in the Johor Bahru Sessions Court last week.

On Tuesday (18 Apr), Sessions Judge Datuk Che Wan Zaidi Che Wan Ibrahim delivered the verdict to cane Yap lightly seven times, and added that Yap should be placed on a one-year good behaviour bond with a surety of RM10,000 (approx. 2,255 USD) for his offence.

The light caning on Yap will be held in open court at 9am on 21 May.

According to Section 293 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC), a criminal court has the option to impose an alternative punishment on a youthful offender upon conviction.

Section 293(1)(c) of the CPC stipulates that the court may order a male offender to receive a maximum of seven strokes of a light cane while on the court premises and in the presence of their parent and guardian.

Lawyer defended that Yap’s action as ‘self-defence’

According to Malaysia’s media, The Star, Yap’s lawyer, G. K. Sritharan, had previously argued that Yap’s actions were a response to being attacked by the dog on multiple occasions.

“He is a good boy and often cycles in that location, where he is often attacked by the dog.”

“Yap once suffered a fractured finger after falling off a bicycle as a result of being chased by the dog before. Until now, his hand is still not strong and he cannot do heavy work, ” the lawyer told the court.

In an act of “self-defence”, Yap threw flower pots, stones, and hit the dog with twigs, the lawyer claimed.

While acknowledging that the dog was a victim, the lawyer also argued that Yap was a victim of the dog’s violence.

Judge told Yap that his action is ‘cruel and inhumane’

The case revealed that at approximately 12.30 noon on 28 March, a veterinarian from the Johor’s Veterinary Service Department (JPV) conducted a physical examination on a dog.

JPV officer found that the animal was in a state of fear and had bruising and burns on its left thigh, injuries on its front leg, and bleeding in its left eye.

The judge also di ordered that the video recording, of Yap abusing and setting the dog on fire, be played in court.

CCTV footage showed a man hitting and burning the dog in question.

“Your action is cruel and inhumane towards an animal that also has the right to live in peace, ” the judge told Yap.

The footage, shared by netizen Leow Yee Chin on 28 March and went viral online, showed acts of abuse by Yap in front of the premises, where Yap repeatedly hit a stray dog with a metal rod before leaving in his car.

After a while, the male returned to the same location, beat the dog again, and threw a brick at it.

He proceeded to light the dog on fire, causing it to run away with its tail ablaze.

Yap issued an apology after the incident exposed online

Braden Yap issued an apology via a 45-second video on his Facebook post after the video went viral on social media, with many netizens questioning the sincerity behind his apology.

“I know no matter how I explain it, I should not and cannot do it. So, I admit my mistake.”

He confessed that he had learned a lesson, was very sorry for what happened, and would reflect and repent.

“I’m really sorry. I promise here that I will never do this again. I hope everyone can give me a chance to reform, and I’m willing to cover the medical expenses.”

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