Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim has won an appeal to block his sodomy trial from being moved to a higher court.
Court judge Komathy Suppiah ruled Friday that Anwar's trial should
remain in her court and not be transferred to Malaysia's High Court as
the country's attorney general had ordered.
Anwar and his
lawyers say moving his case to the High Court would open the case up to
political interference - a charge government lawyers reject.
Ibrahim is on trial for allegedly sodomizing a close aide. His arrest
in June came shortly after his opposition alliance made huge gains in
parliamentary elections - winning 82 seats in Malaysia's 222-member
Anwar, the father of six children, was convicted
of sodomizing his former driver in 2000 and sentenced to 15 years in
prison on sodomy and corruption charges. He was released in 2004 after
his conviction was overturned. He has strongly maintained his
innocence of both the earlier and current charges - calling them
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.