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Posts Tagged ‘CBT’

Jerusalem circa 30 AD, S’pore today

In Public Administration on 14/04/2017 at 5:39 am

One thing never changes: the mob will always be with us.

More than 2000 years ago, in Jerusalem, according to the four gospels, the nuts among the citizens of the city shouted “Crucify Jesus”after only praising him the week before.

The High Court’s reduction of the the sentences of all six former City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders, got the cybernuts shouting “Crucify the Judges and the PAP”.

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The Great S’pore Sale came early this yr for some people

The 3-judge panel changed the sentences

  1. Kong Hee: From 8 years to 3 years and 6 months.
  2. Tan Ye Peng: From 5½ years’ to 3 years and 2 months.
  3. Chew Eng Han: From 6 years to 3 years and 4 months.
  4. Serina Wee Gek Yin : From 5 years to 2½ years.
  5. John Lam Leng Hung: From 3 years to 1½ years.
  6. Sharon Tan Shao Yuen: From 21 months to 7 months

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According to the nuts in TreLand Kong Hee’s lawyer Edwin Tong (a PAP member and MP) had real clout to influence the judges; or that the judges were paid off with Kong Hee’s millions. Whatever, the PAP was to blame, somehow.

TOC (to its discredit) did a round-up of netizens’ views that were only slighly less anti-PAP and anti the judiciary

Even constructive, nation-building ST allowed ST readers to join in the fun:

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(Martyn See’s FB image of ST FB’s postings by readers)

Even Jack Sim (aka the Toilet Man: a really decent, hair-minded guy) made remarks on Facebook that can fall within the contempt of court rules that parly recently approved (no I’m not going to quote him but in spirit they are close to the ST comments).

Incidentally the minister for pets and the police should be KPKBing at the so-called, constructive nation-building ST for publishing the comments. He’s got to be fair: after all he has aiming his Colt Magnum and Alsatians at Terry’s Online Channel for pointing out bad policing decisions.

Now there are good reasons to be concerned with the High Court decision that overturned a precedent that stood for 40 years. I go into that in a seperate post

But by making personal attacks on them and the PAP MP lawyer representing Kong, and the PAP and the judiciary generally the cybernuts are behaving like the Jews who wanted to crucify Jesus.

But I doubt the cybernuts would have the balls to say,

His blood be on us, and on our children.

They too are sheep, a term they use to describe the 70%ers.

 

 

 

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CHC: CBT is a very technical offence

In Public Administration on 08/04/2017 at 11:10 am

The High Court’s reduction of the sentences of all six former City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders has upset a lot of people especially the anti-PAP cybernuts. (I’ll talk about their antics in a separate post).

Here I want to explain why two High Court judges decided the way they did. (The decision was a split one: 2 to 1.

Criminal breach of trust (CBT) is a very technical crime and the judgment was a very technical one.

I know one head of crime section in the AGC who became a district judge, and as a district judge had his verdict on a CBT case overturned on appeal. He had acquitted someone accused of CBT only for the guy to be found guilty on appeal by the AGC. Incidentally his career in the legal service was not affected.

Now to the judgement.

Justice Chao said in his oral judgement on Friday that a majority decision was made to reduce the respective CBT charges against the six, from an “aggravated” form of CBT – which they were initially convicted of – to a “simple” form of CBT because the law states that a person convicted of an aggravated form charge. must be” a public servant, banker, merchant, factor, broker, attorney or an agent when committing the crime”.

Justice Chao said he and Justice Woo agreed

with the Prosecution that directors, who occupy positions of great power, trust and responsibility, are more culpable than employees when they commit CBT offences against their companies or organisations. To that extent, we agree that it is intuitively unsatisfactory that a director would only be liable for CBT simpliciter under s 406 of the Penal Code while a clerk, servant, carrier or warehouse keeper would be liable for an aggravated offence under either ss 407 or 408 of the Penal Code. This does not, however, mean that we can ignore the wording of the section. Like the Malaysian Court of Appeal in Periasamy, we are of the view that adopting the interpretation put forward by the Prosecution may be “tantamount to rewriting the section by means of an unauthori[s]ed legislative act” (at 575A). Such a task should be more properly left to Parliament. For instance, we note that the relevant expression of the equivalent provision in the Malaysian Penal Code was amended in 1993 to read “in his capacity of a public servant or an agent” …”

Because the “simple” form carried a lesser sentence, the sentences were reduced.

So why did the AGC think that what the six did was “aggravated CBT” and not “simple CBT”.

The answer according to a lawyer is that  the Court in this case did not follow the earlier High Court decision in Tay Choo Wah, which had been applied for some 40 years in Singapore and which held that Penal Code Section 409 applied to directors.

The Court could do this but the judge in the lower court was bound by the decision in Tay Choo Wah.

Will the AGC seek to persuade the Court in a future case that the Court in this case got the interpretation of Section 409 wrong, or pursue a criminal reference under Section 397 of the Criminal Procedure Code?

Or will the law be amended?

I suspect the latter. Because if there’s an appeal under s397 and AGC wins, there’ll be another cyberstorm, The convicted will not have their sentences reinstated*.


 

*I stand corrected. The CA can reinstate the sentences but is not forced to. The sentences cannot be increased. My mistake. 10 April