Logachev strikes again: A “new” sentencing framework for evasion of income tax in Tan Song Cheng v PP [2021] SGHC 138

Consistency in sentencing promotes fairness by ensuring that like offenders are treated similarly by our criminal justice system. This can be achieved by applying well-constructed sentencing frameworks. The High Court in Tan Song Cheng v PP acknowledged the importance of consistency in sentencing, particularly for offences under s 96(1) of the Income Tax Act.

What cases are to be heard by the Appellate Division and Why: Noor Azlin bte Abdul Rahman and another v Changi General Hospital Pte Ltd [2021] 2 SLR 440

On 2 January 2021, certain statutory amendments came into effect to amend Singapore's court appellate system. These changes established the Appellate Division of the High Court ("AD"), akin to an intermediary appellate court, while the High Court was newly named the General Division of the High Court ("Gen Div"). In Noor Azlin bte Abdul Rahman and another v Changi General Hospital Pte Ltd [2021] 2 SLR 440 the Court of Appeal ("CA") explains the significance of the AD, what cases are to be heard by the AD and why, as well as when a case may be transferred from the AD to the CA and vice versa.

The Endgame of Section 377A Litigation: Case note on Tan Seng Kee v Attorney-General [2022] SGCA 16

*By: Don Ho Jia Hao I. IntroductionThis case is the latest instalment of more than a decade of litigation on the constitutionality of s 377A of the Penal Code (“PC”).[1] Section 377A provides:Outrages on decency377A. Any male person who, in public or private, commits, or abets the commission of, or procures or attempts to procure … Continue reading The Endgame of Section 377A Litigation: Case note on Tan Seng Kee v Attorney-General [2022] SGCA 16

Changes to Sentencing Guidelines for Workplace Negligence: Mao Xuezhong v Public Prosecutor [2020] SGHC 99

In recent years, the higher courts have been issuing more sentencing guidelines to ensure the consistency of sentences being meted out to offenders. In Mao Xuezhong v Public Prosecutor (“Mao Xuezhong”), a three-Judge coram of the High Court issued a new sentencing guideline for offences under s 15(3A) of the Workplace Safety and Health Act (“WSHA”):

Directors and their Two Hats: An Analysis of Sim Tee Meng v Haw Wan Sin David [2019] SGCA 71

Traditionally, directors are said to only owe a duty of care to their company. In certain circumstances however, directors may also owe a personal duty of care to their clients, thereby rendering the director personally liable to the client. In Sim Tee Meng v Haw Wan Sin David [2019] SGCA 71, the Court of Appeal applied the Spandeck framework in establishing whether a duty of care was owed by a key executive officer to the company's clients.

Winning But Not Winning: Sharing Lottery Winnings In The Event of a Divorce (BOI v BOJ [2019] 2 SLR 114)

In the decision of BOI v BOJ, the Court of Appeal clarified that lottery winnings received during a marriage constitute matrimonial assets to be divided between parties, should they divorce. The court also set out the approach to attributing contributions from lottery winnings. Instead of examining who purchased the winning ticket, the court will focus on the intention with which the ticket was purchased. For parties seeking a divorce, this approach creates a greater responsibility to clearly show their intention that the winnings be fully attributed to them.

Sentencing Approach for Workplace Safety Breaches: Nurun Novi Saydur Rahman v Public Prosecutor [2019] 3 SLR 413

The recent case of Nurun Novi Saydur Rahman v Public Prosecutor was the first time an offence under s 15(3A) of the Workplace Safety and Health Act (“WSHA”) had been brought before the Singapore High Court. The High Court introduced a new two-stage sentencing framework to be applied to such offences. This paper examines the rationale and implications of the proposed sentencing framework.

Lost Chance – Acceptance at last? A commentary on Armstrong, Carol Ann v Quest Laboratories Pte Ltd [2018] SGHC 66

In the tort of negligence, damages are awarded if the claimant can establish that he has suffered loss. While most claims for loss in the tort of negligence usually revolve around physical damage, courts have recognised losses of a non-physical nature, including claims for pure economic loss or loss of genetic affinity. Courts, however, have consistently refused to recognise claims for a loss of chance in the context of medical negligence. Simply put, a lost chance arises where negligence on the part of the doctor deprives the patient of his chances of recovery.

Case Commentary: Ochroid Trading v Chua Siok Lui

Where a contract is illegal, the contract is void and the courts will not enforce the contract. Despite the simplicity of the foregoing logic, the concept of illegality in contract law – often used as a defence mechanism in lawsuits – has long vexed students and practitioners alike. As Lady Justice Gloster in Patel v Mirza (“Patel”) remarked, it is “almost impossible to ascertain or articulate principled rules from the authorities relating to the recovery of money or other assets paid or transferred under illegal contracts”.

In Singapore, the Court of Appeal (“CA”) in Ting Siew May v Boon Lay Choo (“Ting Siew May”) sought to overcome this difficulty by establishing a two-stage approach to the application of the principles of statutory illegality, common law illegality and restitutionary recovery. In the later case of Ochroid Trading Ltd v Chua Siok Lui (“Ochroid”), the CA affirmed the Ting Siew May framework and the principles encapsulated within. In coming to its decision, the CA in Ochroid also considered and rejected the approach adopted by the UK Supreme Court in Patel, which, essentially, determines whether a contract should be struck down for illegality based on a range of factors.