You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Aussies likely to be charged: Malaysia

AAP logoAAP 3/10/2016 Lauren Farrow

Nine Australian men, including a staffer of federal MP Christopher Pyne, could face six months in jail for stripping down to budgie smugglers emblazoned with the Malaysian flag at the country's Formula One grand prix.

Jack Walker, an adviser to the Minister for Defence Industry, was among the men who displayed their Malaysian flag-themed swimwear after Australian Daniel Ricciardo won the Grand Prix in Sepang on Sunday.

Sepang assistant police commissioner Abdul Aziz Ali said the allegedly drunk men were "caught in the act" and police believe there is enough evidence to have them charged.

"I think there will be no problem in charging them," Asst Comm Ali told AAP on Tuesday.

"All the evidence is in the recordings ... they were caught in the act."

The men are expected to appear at the Magistrate's Court on Thursday to face charges or for police to apply for an order to extend their detention.

Asst Comm Ali said the men, who are being held at Sepang District Police office, could be charged with an "intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace" or public indecency.

The first offence relates to their use of the Malaysian flag on the swimwear and carries a maximum six months in prison, he added.

"They were under the influence of alchol. Actually, they were drunk," Asst Comm said.

"They bought the underwear from Australia. They had the intention of doing that (stripping down) at the very beginning."

A spokesperson for Mr Pyne said the matter is being handled by the Australian High Commissioner.

"Until we have a clearer picture of the process at hand it would be unwise to comment further," they told AAP on Tuesday.

It is understood the men have appointed counsel to assist them and are receiving ongoing help from the Australian consulate in Malaysia.

Sepang International Circuit chief Datuk Razlan Razali hit out at the men's behaviour saying it showed a "huge lack of respect" to Malaysians.

"This is stupid behaviour from foreigners who have no sense of cultural sensitivity and respect," he told the New Straits Times.

"They deserve to be locked up, investigated and taken action against."

Australia's Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce said it was not appropriate behaviour to "drop your strides", no matter which country you're in.

"I'm hoping the Malaysians will understand there wasn't any real malice in it. Stupidity, obviously. Malice, no," he said in Canberra.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon