KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – A court told a disgruntled car owner he cannot chronicle the alleged defects of his Malaysian-made Perodua and his tirade against the car maker on a personal Web site.
In the first case of its kind in Malaysia, the Appeals Court on Tuesday upheld a High Court order against Richard Fong Khee Choong.
The High Court had ordered Fong on Sept. 17, 2003 to dismantle a personal Web site he had set up in October 2002 after purchasing an allegedly defective Kelisa car from Perodua.
The Appeals Court judges said they agreed with the High Court that the allegations in Fong's Web site, which contained one article about his grievances, "attacked the reputation and integrity of the company."
Fong had purchased a Perodua Kelisa car in August 2002 and contacted the company by email with several allegations about defects in the vehicle. He subsequently set up the Web site, alleging corruption in the company.
In response, Perodua sued him for defamation, and obtained an interim order from the High Court to have the Web site shut pending a resolution of the defamation suit.
The company, the second national car company after Proton, said Fong's allegations implied that Perodua practiced deception and fraud for its own interest instead of the customer's needs.
It also claimed that Fong's allegations meant that the car maker was betraying the public trust and was involved in a conspiracy to cheat the people.