IPOH: The driver of the Sani Express bus, in which 10 passengers lost their lives after it skidded and crashed into the road divider at Km 280.3 of the North-South Highway near here on Saturday, was charged with reckless driving in the Traffic Court here today.
Mohd Kamil Mohd Rashid, 37, who was driving the express bus with registration number WSX 5010 is accused of driving the vehicle in reckless manner or speeding at around 1.23am on Saturday (Dec 26).
He was charged under Section 41 (1) Road Transport Act 1987 and if convicted, can be fined not more than RM10,000 or jailed not more than five years or both.
Mohd Kamil, who was in his bus company's uniform - a red shirt with the company's logo and dark pants, appeared calm when the charge was read out to him and entered a plea of not guilty.
The prosecution represented by Deputy Public Prosecutor Nurul Izalina Rajaai urged the court to set bail at RM15,000 in the public interest as the tragedy cost the lives of 10 people and for the accused's driving licence to be suspended.
However, defence counsel S. Arumugam and Khairun Niza Husnin asked the court to set an affordable bail saying the accused had no prior traffic offences and had six dependants, his wife, three children, aged nine, seven and six months, as well as his aged parents.
Magistrate Mohamed Ruhizat Abdullah set bail at RM20,000 in one surety and fixed Feb 3 for the trial.
"This (bail) is based in the public interest and other factors. Your driving licence is also to be confiscated until the case is settled," he said.
Mohd Kamil was released after two representatives from the company posted bail.
Also present in court were his wife and children as well as his father. - BERNAMA