JOHOR BAHRU: A Singaporean man who was charged together with two Malaysians over the illegal dumping of chemicals into Sungai Kim Kim was granted bail on Wednesday (Mar 27), after the High Court overturned an earlier ruling by the Sessions Court.
Singaporean Wang Jing Chao, 34, was offered bail of RM250,000 (US$61,314) with two Malaysian sureties, according to a report by The Star.
He must report to the Pasir Gudang police station on the 15th of every month until the case is over.
"The Sungai Kim Kim incident has been receiving attention not only in Johor but also throughout Malaysia as it has been intensively reported by the media," said Johor Bahru High Court judge Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid.
"The High Court has the right to review the decision, and I found that the learned (Sessions Court) judge has made a mistake," he said, according to The Star.
The Sessions Court originally ruled on Sunday that Wang would not be offered bail as he was a foreigner.
Wang and Malaysian Yap Yoke Liang, 36, directors of used tyre-processing company P Tech Resources, are accused of conspiring with lorry driver N Maridass, 35, who allegedly disposed of chemicals illegally into Sungai Kim Kim on Mar 7.
The toxic waste pollution at Pasir Gudang affected thousands in the area, causing a wave of poisoning cases.
All 111 schools in the Pasir Gudang area were closed following the incident and will reopen on Mar 31.
Wang and Yap face 32 charges between them, while Maridass has one charge filed against him for illegally disposing chemicals into the river.
On Sunday, the Sessions Court granted RM100,000 bail for Maridass and RM250,000 for Yap, with one surety each.
This was reduced by the High Court to RM30,000 for Maridass and RM150,000 for Yap.
Another Singaporean man is wanted by police to assist with investigations. The man, who has been identified as 49-year-old Sim Wei Dee, is another registered director of the tyre-processing factory.
The case involving Wang and Yap will be heard again on Apr 30.