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Lawyers building a case against obstructive cops

An increase of complaints by local lawyers against PSP and PJ officers for abuse of power has led the Macau Lawyers Association to prepare a joint complaint to the government

An increase in complaints by local lawyers against the Public Security Police Force (PSP) and Judiciary Police (PJ) for abuse of power by its officers is what has led the Macau Lawyers Association (AAM) to prepare a joint complaint to deliver to the government, local sources told Business Daily.
“Lawyers have been complaining of not being able to defend their clients’ rights properly [because of] security officers – by some PJ officers, but mainly by PSP officers. They complain of police officers not allowing them to have access to or talk to their clients, blocking them from filing legal requests and making processes that should be simple and direct extremely hard,” a local lawyer anonymously told Business Daily.
According to the lawyer, complaints of this nature have increased in recent months and could be the reason for the AAM choosing to issue a release to lawyers in Macau requesting they direct any complaint of abuse of power they have to the organisation.
In the release sent on May 4, the organisation stated that ‘several complaints of misconduct by security officers’ had led the organisation to request lawyers send information of any witnessed cases of abuse of power or infringement of residents’ and non-residents’ rights to the AAM by May 16.
According to lawyer Oriana Inácio Pun, a member of the AAM management, the Association has received “reports of conflicts between some lawyers and police authorities” with the release being a way of collecting information on these kinds of incidents to later tackle the government on the issue.
“I can’t say exactly how many or if any complaints have been sent after the release was sent. The AAM has yet to discuss the issue, what the complaints are and if they’re valid,” Mr. Pun told Business Daily, adding that an AAM general assembly is slated to take place today.
Business Daily contacted the PSP and the PJ for comment on the alleged complaints of abuse of power by its officers but no response had been received by the time this newspaper went to print.