Former domestic worker Parti Liyani, who was acquitted by the High Court of her conviction and sentencing on theft charges related to the belongings of former Changi Airport Group chairman Liew Mun Leong and his family, will go forward with her intention to seek a disciplinary inquiry against the two prosecutors involved in her trial for their alleged misconduct.
Ms Parti’s spokesperson from the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (HOME) told CNA on Thursday (Oct 15) that the Indonesian national “has resolved to proceed” with the case against Deputy Public Prosecutors Tan Yanying and Tan Wee Hao.
While Ms Parti filed an application for a disciplinary inquiry in June — some time before her acquittal — she had later filed a notice to discontinue the said proceedings against the two public prosecutors on 29 September.
Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon earlier this month gave Ms Parti two weeks to decide if she wants to go forward with her application to begin disciplinary proceedings against the prosecutors.
It was previously reported that she was conflicted between pursuing the case against the two prosecutors and promptly going back to Indonesia as she was “overwhelmed by the events of the past month”, according to her counsel Anil Balchandani.
However, Ms Parti reportedly believes that the prosecutors should answer to the allegations she made against them in her affidavit on their conduct in her trial.
The AGC said in a statement earlier this month that the two prosecutors “welcome the chance to present a full and transparent account of what transpired during the trial” and “will cooperate fully in any inquiry”.
One of the issues raised by Justice Chan Seng Onn — the High Court judge who presided over Ms Parti’s appeal — was related to an incomplete demonstration by the prosecutors during the trial of a DVD player Ms Parti was accused of stealing.
However, Ms Parti argued that the Liew family allowed her to have it owing to the fact that it was damaged.
During the trial, the prosecutors presented the DVD player to Ms Parti and showed that it could play a video stored in a hard disk. However, on appeal, it was shown that the player could not play DVDs.
Justice Chan said that if the prosecution was aware of this defect, they should have disclosed it.
Otherwise, the trial court might have been misled into thinking that the player was in good working condition when Ms Parti was questioned about it.
Should Chief Justice Menon grant Ms Parti leave to commence the proceedings in question, he will appoint a disciplinary tribunal, which will hear the case and investigate the complaint.
The disciplinary tribunal will then be required to submit a report to the Chief Justice.
The Legal Profession Act stipulates that the Chief Justice will dismiss the complaint should the tribunal find no cause of sufficient gravity for disciplinary action against the prosecutors.
However, if the outcome of the disciplinary tribunal’s investigations find that there is cause of sufficient gravity, the Chief Justice may appoint an advocate and solicitor or a legal service officer to apply for an order to impose sanctions on the prosecutors.
Sanctions may include — but are not limited to — censures, striking the prosecutors off the roll, prohibiting them from applying for a practising certificate for up to five years, and imposing a penalty of up to S$20,000.
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