KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — As many as 62 cases of sexual crimes against children were registered in the Court for Sexual Crimes Against Children in Putrajaya, the nation’s administrative capital since the special court began operating on July 4.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Azalina Othman said of these, 11 cases had been resolved while 25 mentioned and 26 were still being tried.

The cases registered with the Court for Sexual Crimes Against Children will be settled or disposed of within a year from the date they are registered with the court, she said when replying to Dr Noraini Ahmad (BN-Parit Sulong) who asked about the number of sexual crimes against children cases which had been tried so far, at the Dewan Rakyat (Lower House) sitting today.

Azalina said the government planned to extend in stages the special court to conduct proceedings of sexual crimes involving children throughout the country.

The first Court for Sexual Crimes Against Children was set up in Malaysia, the first in Southeast Asia to hear and decide on cases in Shah Alam, Petaling Jaya, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.

On the court infrastructure, she said the Court for Sexual Crimes Against Children in Putrajaya was equipped with special facilities like court recording transcription (CRT), an audio-visual system, a child witness room, as well as a child witness waiting room (Permata room).

The special facilities are very important to assist the court proceedings in the special court so as to ensure that the trials are carried out quickly and effectively.

The audio-visual system will enable the child witnesses to be more comfortable to provide evidence in the open court while they are in a separate room, and to help the Public Prosecutor and lawyers conduct the court proceedings, she said.

The infrastructure and special facilities in the child witness room and the child witness waiting room in Putrajaya which were sponsored by the Permata Foundation is a child-friendly room which enables the child witnesses and victims to attend the hearings in court without becoming upset.

Azalina said a working committee comprising representatives from the Royal Malaysia Police, the Attorney-General’s Chambers, the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development, as well non-governmental organisations for children will be formed to draw up special and comprehensive guidelines for cases of sexual cases against children.