Akasaa and Avec recently published the book The Legal Lion of the Commonwealth: Judgments. The two-volume numbered limited edition work, edited by Angela Yap and Ritchie Ramesh, contains Eusoffe’s history and his landmark judgments in constitutional cases in Malaysia.
Hailed as works of literature, Eusoffe’s judgments merge law, Latin and social commentary with legendary wit. His steely grit coupled with a photographic memory made lawyers and witnesses shiver before him.
Immortalised in this volume is the first-ever collection of Eusoffe’s oral and written judgments plus his dissertation on the American doctrine of police power.
Presiding over landmark constitutional cases in Malaysia, his rulings set precedents for other landmark cases in the Commonwealth and are still frequently quoted in international law journals. His judgments include Malaysia’s then longest-running criminal trial of the historic Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Bugner boxing match in Kuala Lumpur, Merdeka University, Asian Wall Street Journal’s John P. Berthelsen and many other stimulating, thought-provoking cases.
All his judgments displayed great sagacity, as well as panache and reﬂected the zenith of the judiciary’s judgments during his era. In the case of Re Pengkalan Kota Bye-Election, which was an election petition from Penang, while delivering oral judgment, he recited a lengthy grammatically correct sentence sprinkled with numerous alliterations prompting the then Chief Minister of Penang, Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu to remark that it was “the longest sentence I’ve ever heard in perfect English”. Although the legal fraternity today might have a faint memory of him, somewhat like a gegenschein or an alpenglow, this book will ensure that his contribution to the law and the legal profession will forever be cherished and remembered. His mark on the legal profession has and always will be aeonian. This book will serve as a repository of Tan Sri Eusoffe’s judgments for posterity. It will make interesting reading to all in the legal fraternity and beyond. I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in the conﬂuence, intertwining and interdigitating of literature especially English literature with the law. — Datuk Aslam Zainuddin, Deputy Chief Registrar (Policy), Federal Court of Malaysia, July 2017