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Capital punishment in Malaysia applies to murder, drug trafficking, treason, and waging war against Yang di-Pertuan Agong (the King). Recently, the law has been extended to include acts of terrorism. Any terrorists, and anyone who aids terrorists, financially or otherwise, are liable to face the death penalty.

Only High Courts has the jurisdiction to sentence someone to death. Juvenile cases involving the death penalty are heard in High Courts instead of the juvenile court where other juvenile cases are heard. Appeals to the Court of Appeal and the Federal Court are automatic. The last resort for the convicted is to plead pardon or clemency. Pardons or clemency are granted by the Ruler or Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governor) of the state where the crime is committed or the Yang di-Pertuan Agong if the crime is committed in the Federal Territories or when involving members of the armed forces. Death sentences are carried out by hanging as provided in Section 281 of the Criminal Procedure Code. There shall be no death sentence against a pregnant woman or a child.

Between 1970 and 2001, Malaysia executed 359 people. As of 2006, 159 people remain on the death row.

Statutory provisions

The following is a list of criminal offenses that carry the death penalty:

  • Waging war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong - Section 121 Penal Code (see: Al-Ma'unah)
  • Offences against a Ruler[1] - Section 121A Penal Code
  • Abetting mutiny (Armed Forces) - Section 132 Penal Code
  • Murder - Section 302 Penal Code (mandatory) (see: Mona Fandey)
  • Abetment of suicide[2] - Section 305 Penal Code
  • Attempt by life convict to murder, if hurt is caused - Section 307(c) Penal Code (mandatory)
  • Kidnapping or abducting in order to murder - Section 364 Penal Code
  • Hostage taking - Section 374A Penal Code
  • Gang robbery with murder - Section 396 Penal Code
  • Drug trafficking - Section 39B Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 (mandatory) (see: Barlow and Chambers execution)
  • Possession of firearms - Section 57 Internal Security Act 1960


  1. ^ including the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan, Yang di-Pertuan Besar and Yang di-Pertua Negeri.
  2. ^ when suicide committed by a child, insane or delirious person, an idiot, or intoxicated person.

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