Legislative Update: Computer Misuse and Cybersecurity Act Amendment

Significance

The Computer Misuse and Cybersecurity (Amendment) Bill was introduced in the Singapore Parliament on 9 March 2017. The Bill seeks to amend the Computer Misuse and Cybersecurity Act (Cap. 50A) to introduce new criminal offences on computer offences and cybercrimes. This is especially pertinent given the rising number and extent of cybercrimes today. Just last month (February 2017), the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) system was hacked into and the personal data of many SAF service personnel were stolen: see reports on Today Online, Channel NewsAsia, Straits Times. Do note that the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) does not apply to MINDEF as it is a public body.

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Case Update: Public Prosecutor v Chua Siew Wei Kathleen [2016] SGHC 33

Public Prosecutor v Chua Siew Wei Kathleen [2016] SGHC 33

Significance: Singapore High Court orders retrial of criminal matter as it found that the trial judge: (1) had unfairly restricted the ambit of the prosecution’s cross-examination and impeded their ability to present their case fully; (2) had also impaired his own ability to evaluate and weigh the case presented by each side; (3) had failed to consider essential pieces of evidence in the course of arriving at his conclusion and had therefore arrived at findings which are, in all the circumstances, against the weight of the evidence.

Case Update: Public Prosecutor v Chow Chian Yow Joseph Brian [2016] SGHC 18 – SGHC applies regression analysis to criminal sentencing

Public Prosecutor v Chow Chian Yow Joseph Brian [2016] SGHC 18

Significance: Singapore High Court judge cites John Stuart Mill’s “On Liberty”, applies regression analysis to plot graphs of benchmark sentences for a criminal offence, and lays down sentencing principles on offence of evading National Service (NS) without a valid exit permit under the Enlistment Act.

sentencinggraph

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Case Update: Lee Siew Boon Winston v PP [2015] – criminal reference

Lee Siew Boon Winston v PP [2015] SGCA 67

Significance: conditions for leave to grant criminal reference to Court of Appeal.

In Singapore’s system of criminal justice, there is only one tier of appeal. Apart from the single tier of appeal, there is the criminal reference procedure, where one or more questions of law of public interest can be brought to the Court of Appeal, but only with leave: [4].

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