Written by Fun Wei Xuan, Joel* I. IntroductionProsecutorial discretion, broadly speaking, refers to the Public Prosecutor’s ability to, in its sole discretion, make a myriad of decisions, including: whether to initiate prosecution, what charge to prefer, whether to amend a charge, and whether to discontinue prosecution. This power is provided for in Article 35(8) of … Continue reading JUDICIAL REVIEW OF PROSECUTORIAL DECISIONS
In a new collaboration with the Supreme Court, SMU Law students (under SMU Lexicon) will pen articles on a number of issues concerning the rule of law, so as to foster greater public awareness of how cases are decided as well as the legal processes involved.
Parti Liyani was an Indonesian domestic helper who was charged with stealing up to $34,000 worth of items from then-Changi Airport Group chairman Liew Mun Leong and his family. She was initially sentenced to jail, but on appeal the High Court acquitted Ms Liyani of all charges. The High Court held that the Prosecution had not provided sufficient credible evidence to support its claims. Furthermore, the Prosecution could not rebut the Defence’s allegation that Ms Liyani’s employers had an improper motive in making a police report against Ms Liyani, i.e. to prevent her from lodging a complaint to the authorities about being asked to work outside her approved place of employment.
Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the first leader of Pakistan apocryphally said, “Think 100 times before you take a decision, but once that decision is made, stand by it as one man.”
Our lives have their shapes because of decisions made or not made. Of course, some decisions are weightier than others. In particular, the decisions that judges make regarding the cases before them have significant bearing on many, even extending in more extreme cases to determining whether a person lives or dies.