PETALING JAYA: Federal Court judge Datuk Seri S. Augustine Paul, who presided over former deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy and corruption trials in 1998, has died. He was 66.
Augustine died at the Selayang Hospital at 2.45pm on Saturday after suffering from a chronic illness for awhile, said his son-in-law Robert Devan, 37.
He leaves behind wife Datin Seri Dr Mary Paul, daughter Dr Juliana Sharmini, 29, and son Alan John, 27.
The casket will leave No. 16, Lorong Taman Pantai 7, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur on Sunday at 2pm to the Parish of St Peter, No. 441, Section 96A, Jalan Changkat Riong for the funeral service at 2.30pm.
Meanwhile, Bernama reported that Augustine, who obtained his Barrister-at-Law from Inner Temple, England, began his career in 1971 as Federal Counsel at the Attorney-General’s Chambers and later as a magistrate in Ipoh, Perak.
He also served as a Sessions Court judge in Temerloh, Pahang, Malacca and Penang and was chairman of a special committee on taxation before being appointed to the Kuala Lumpur High Court Bench in May, 1998.
He was confirmed as a High Court judge for less than six months when he presided over Anwar’s sodomy and corruption cases which started in November, 1998, and for nearly six months his name kept popping up in the world’s news bulletins with his “irrelevant” rulings in the case.
Seven years later, Augustine was appointed Federal Court judge and he had several months to go before retiring at the time of his demise.
Chief Justice Tun Zaki Tun Azmi said Augustine was a hard working man.
“I have not known Augustine for a long time. However, for the short period that I came to know him, he was a very hard working man until the last moment… he was still working, he was always anxious about work than about himself,” he said.
Zaki also offered his condolences to the judge’s family.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan said Augustine was a very experienced judge.
“He was a committed person in all aspects of his work and knew the law to provide justice,” he said.
Meanwhile, the late judge’s secretary, Norhaniah Abdul Hanan, said Augustine was a good boss.
Norhaniah, 54, who served with Augustine since April 2008 said his passing was a big loss.