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Malaysia's Top Court Hears Final Appeal for Anwar Ibrahim

  • VOA News

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, center, walks with his wife Wan Azizah as they arrive for his final hearing of his sodomy conviction in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2014.

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, center, walks with his wife Wan Azizah as they arrive for his final hearing of his sodomy conviction in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2014.

Malaysia's top court has begun hearing the final appeal of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, who faces sodomy charges he says are politically motivated.

The ex-deputy prime minister, who is the government's main political rival, is accused of having illicit sex in 2008 with a man who was then his aide.

The 67-year-old Anwar was cleared of the charges in 2012 by a lower court that decided the DNA evidence in the trial was contaminated. But in March, an appeals court controversially overturned the acquittal, sentencing him to five years in prison and a subsequent five-year ban from politics.

Before entering the Federal Court on Tuesday, Anwar said he was sure he has done nothing wrong.

"I'm always confident, based on facts and law," he said.

Anwar says the charges against him are false and were made up by the government, which has been in power for 57 years.

Sodomy, even if consensual, is punishable by up to 20 years in prison under a colonial-era law in Malaysia.

The Federal Court is expected to deliver a verdict on Wednesday.

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