Escaping the gallows – Drug Mules, Death Penalties and Discretion

By Yeoh Jean Ann, An Xian Chen, Shannon Chua, Kevin Lau

Singapore is famous for her zero-tolerance approach against drugs, and infamous for having one of the world’s highest per-capita execution rates.1 Up till recently, the death penalty was mandatory for offences such as murder and drug trafficking over a certain weight. This controversial issue has always received the ire of anti-capital punishment activists. Read More


Professor Roger Hood & the Mandatory Death Penalty

By Leong Li Jie

Time and again, Parliament and the judiciary have defended our laws permitting the mandatory death penalty (or MDP in short).  Enshrined in s. 302 of the Penal Code (Cap 224, 2008 Rev Ed Sing) and the Second Schedule of the Misuse of Drugs Act (Cap 185, 2008 Rev Ed Sing), the MDP (or more accurately the statute that the MDP is enshrined in) requires that a court sentence a murdereror a drug trafficker2 to death. Read More

Innocence is the Best Defence

By Chan Min Hui, Vincent Ho and Qua Bi Qi

The Greek playwright, Euripides, once wrote: “Ours is a universe in which justice is accidental, and innocence no protection.” Given the stereotypical harshness and efficiency of Singapore’s criminal justice system, it is paramount that the accused persons can rely upon their actual innocence as a refuge against wrongful convictions. Read More

The Desire for Justice

By Chen Chongguang Daniel

The desire for Justice is innate in all of us. There need not be any other reason to strive for it, other than achieving Justice itself. This is regardless of the (deemed) gravity of the situation at hand, or our relationship (or lack thereof) with the person who stands to lose most from any potential injustice. Read More

The Risk of Wrongful Conviction Given Singapore’s Legal Landscape

By Mark Cheng

“It is better to risk saving a guilty man than to condemn an innocent one,” wrote Voltaire. But one, at first glance to the criminal legal system of Singapore, might have his reservations as to whether this vision, or guiding principle, holds much weight here. The alleged culprits to blame lie within our Read More