Ministry of Manpower has said in a press release on Sunday that it is in consultation with the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) over the findings by Justice Chan Seng Onn on the case of Parti Liyani v PP as to whether further action, if any, ought to be taken in this case.
On Friday (4 Sep), Justice Chan allowed the appeal against conviction and acquitted Ms Parti Liyani of all four theft-related charges filed against her.
She was earlier arrested by the Police on 2 Dec 2016 and subsequently charged by AGC on 27 Aug 2017 after her former employer, Mr Liew Mun Leong, Changi Airport Group Chairman accused her to have stolen items from him and his family members on 30 Oct 2016.
Ms Parti was then convicted of the four charges in Mar 2019 and sentenced 26 months of imprisonment by District Judge Olivia Low on 25 Mar 2019.
In the appeal, Parti’s Defence Counsel, Mr Anil Balchandani argued that the Liew family brought the present allegations against her in order to prevent her from returning to Singapore and lodging a complaint to MOM about her illegal deployment by the family after her services was abruptly terminated in Oct 2016.
In his findings, Justice Chan wrote:
In my judgment, there is reason to believe that the Liew family, upon realising her unhappiness, took the pre-emptive first step to terminate her employment suddenly without giving her sufficient time for her to pack, in the hope that Parti would not use the time to make a complaint to MOM. Once she made express her desire to complain to MOM after her sudden termination on 28 October 2016, the Liew family followed up with the police report to ensure her return would be prevented. In my view, the Liew family might not have made a police report had Parti not made her express threat on 28 October 2016 to report the matter to MOM.
He further added,
“Given the seriousness of the consequences that might follow from what Parti said she would do, I have
reason to believe that the Liew family would be very concerned that Parti would carry out her threat to report the matter to MOM. On the totality of the evidence, I find that the Prosecution has failed to dispel the reasonable doubt raised by the Defence and show that there was no improper motive by Mr Liew and Karl in making the police report.”
According to MOM, Parti made a report of illegal deployment by her employer’s spouse Mrs Liew, to her son Mr Karl Liew’s residence in Oct 2017. The deployment was carried out between September and October 2016, and to his office around 2012 and 2013.
The ministry said it had investigated her complaint and found that Mrs Liew deployed her to Mr Karl Liew’s house and office on different occasions.
It then issued a caution to Mrs Liew and an advisory to Mr Karl Liew at the conclusion of the investigation in May 2018.
“The issuing of a caution, on these facts, is consistent with the approach taken in other similar cases.” said MOM and added that the Ministry is in consultation with the AGC as to whether further action, if any, ought to be taken in this case.
In a press release issued on the same day, the AGC said that it will study the judgment on Parti Liyani v PP to assess what further action to be taken in this case, in the light of Justice Chan Seng Onn’s comments on the case.
MOM kept mum about response towards complaint in 2018
During the hearing of the trial in 2018, TOC wrote to MOM about the complaint and asked if it could respond to the matter after the District Judge Olivia Low ruled that the complaint was irrelevant to the case and disallowed Mr Anil from raising any related matters in court.
The ministry kept quiet about the query since our last email in 2018. It is unknown if MOM gave any inputs to AGC in regards to the complaint filed by Parti and its possible implication as what Justice Chan has observed in his findings.