On 2nd July 2021, in Mkini Dotcom Sdn Bhd & 3 Ors v Raub Australian Gold Mining Sdn Bhd (Federal Court Civil Appeal No. 02(f)-61-08/2018(W), the Federal Court of Malaysia by majority in dismissing the appeal filed by Mkini Dotcom Sdn Bhd and its journalists, held, inter-alia, that:

  1. the defence of reportage in law is a separate defence from the defence of qualified privilege or the Reynold’s defence of responsible journalism and is to be treated as mutually exclusive;
  2. the defence of reportage needs to be pleaded expressly and separately from the plea of responsible journalism; and
  3. in a libel claim a company can recover damages for loss of goodwill and reputation as well as vindication of its reputation without having to prove actual loss. In this regard, it is the status of the company at the time of the filing of the writ action that is material.

A copy of the judgment of the majority can be obtained from the following link: https://ejudgment.kehakiman.gov.my/ks_builtin/file_dispatcher_pub.php?id=13507&key=152e27ec1801ebca399f828296286124

A copy of the judgment of the minority can be obtained from the following link: https://ejudgment.kehakiman.gov.my/ks_builtin/file_dispatcher_pub.php?id=13496&key=bf188ae4fd514b4329c83542bbfee041

Tan Sri Dato’ Cecil Abraham, Dato’ Sunil Abraham, Muzalifah Shabudin and Anne Sangeetha Sebastian successfully represented Raub Australian Gold Mining Sdn Bhd in the hearing before the Federal Court of Malaysia.