Law Minister Shanmugam denied making statements that prejudiced Yong Vui Kong’s appeal for clemency

Singapore’s Law Minister K Shanmugam has taken umbrage at the remarks of the lawyer representing Malaysian Yong Vui Kong on the republic’s death row for a drug-related offence.

In a press statement today sent via the Singapore High Commission in Malaysia, he said that M Ravi, representing the 22-year-old Yong, was inaccurate in attributing to him statements which he did not make.

He said he did not comment on any case in the Court of Appeal or on Yong’s matter as he had only mentioned the government’s legislative policies, and whether that will change.  Read more……..

Read also the press statement by Mr M Ravi, lawyer for Yong Vui Kong, in response to the Law Ministry’s comments on Yong’s case. Read more………


律政部昨天针对马来西亚籍青年杨伟光因贩毒被判处死刑的案件,重申新加坡政府向来严厉打击贩毒活动,也对这个事关公众利益的问题采取坚定的原则与立场。

Singapore: Rejection of Yong’s clemency not flawed

Susan Loone, Jul 10, 10 6:50pm, www.malaysiakini.com

Singapore’s Law Minister K Shanmugam has taken umbrage at the remarks of the lawyer representing Malaysian Yong Vui Kong on the republic’s death row for a drug-related offence.

NONEIn a press statement today sent via the Singapore High Commission in Malaysia, he said that M Ravi, representing the 22-year-old Yong (left in photo), was inaccurate in attributing to him statements which he did not make.

He said he did not comment on any case in the Court of Appeal or on Yong’s matter as he had only mentioned the government’s legislative policies, and whether that will change.

He added that he had also mentioned the extent to which youthfulness, as in Yong’s case and other personal factors, were relevant in the formulation of government policy in tackling the drug menace.

Ravi has been quoted in media reports as saying that comments on Yong’s case made by the minister may affect any decision pending.

He had said in reference to Yong’s case, Shanmugam had justified Singapore’s mandatory death penalty for drug traffickers by saying that it would send a wrong signal if the Malaysian was spared the sentence because of his youth.

“We (would be) sending a signal to all drug barons out there: Just make sure to choose a victim who is young or a mother of a young child and use them as the people to carry the drugs into Singapore,” was the comment Ravi was referring to, and which he said had been carried by the local media.

But, Shanmugam maintained that he did not say this but instead answered a resident’s specific question on May 9, whether the government’s policy on the death penalty will be changed in the future as a result of Yong’s case.

To which he had replied that it was hard to speculate on future policy changes but as of now, the death penalty policy to punish certain drug offences remained.

He had also explained why the fight against drugs cannot be successful if the government made exceptions for persons who were young, like Yong, or based on any other personal circumstance, for example, if the person were a mother of a young child.

Standing Firm on Drugs

“If the government changed its policy and let them go, without facing prosecution, or had different penalties for them, then that would encourage more such persons to engage in the drug trade,” said the minister.

“Such an approach would seriously undermine the government’s anti-drug policies,” he added.

NONEYong was convicted of smuggling about 47 grams of heroin in 2007 and was handed down the death sentence, mandatory in Singapore for such crimes involving more than 15 grams of drugs.

Ravi (right) had challenged the constitutionality of the ruling, saying it was ‘cruel and inhuman’ and not in line with customary international law, but the Court of Appeal had dismissed his arguments.

Recently, Foreign Minister Anifah Ahmad said he will be writing to the Singapore government to plead for Yong’s clemency but the republic has yet to receive a letter from Malaysia.

===========================

针对马青年贩毒被判死刑案 律政部重申新加坡法律原则与立场

2010-07-10● 蔡添成报道● 联 合早报

新加坡政府向来严厉打击贩毒活动,也对这个事关公众利益的问题采取坚定的立场。律政部昨天针对马来西亚籍青年杨伟光因贩毒被判 处死刑的案件,重申我国对此的法律原则与立场。

杨伟光针对死刑所提出的上诉已被最高法院上诉庭驳回。本案引起一些人权分子的关注,马国 外交部长阿尼法星期二还表示将写信给新加坡政府,请求我国赦免他的死刑。

律政部昨天针对这名毒贩的代表律师M拉维近日在马国鼓动当地政 党介入他向新加坡寻求特赦时所发表的谈话,回答记者询问时指出律政部长兼内政部第二部长尚穆根5月9日到如切区访问后,在对话会上就居民所提出的关于政府 会否因杨伟光案件而在未来修改强制性死刑的法律作出答复时,是要指出律政部很难预测未来的法律将出现什么样的改变,但到目前为止,政府在滥用毒品法下对毒 贩施以死刑的政策是不变的。

律政部说:“政府已在不同场合解释必须强硬对付滥用毒品与贩毒的用意,而尚穆根部长在对话会上的谈话,是在 重申政府对此的政策和想法。”

尚穆根当时在对话会上指出,要是新加坡因杨伟光个人的背景被认为令人同情而放他一马,将对外国贩毒集团发 出错误信息,即它们只要专选年轻人或是有幼小子女的母亲为他们运毒到新加坡,即使被逮捕了,也会因很多人对他们的同情而免受重罚。这势必使得更多运毒者甘 到本地搞贩毒勾当,以致演变成不可收拾的局面。

他还强调全球很多国家都已在控制毒品泛滥的战役中落败,对失控的情况已是束手无策。新加 坡如不以强硬法律去打击贩毒活动,因毒品泛滥而荼毒年轻生命的情况绝对有可能在本地出现。

杨伟光(22岁)因在2007年6月在本地贩 运47克海洛英而被判处死刑。他最初放弃上诉后提出特赦请求,但是已被纳丹总统驳回。不过,杨伟光在行刑前两天提出暂缓死刑的申请,并获得上诉机会。

我国法律规定除非获得总统特赦,任何走私达15克海洛英者,当法庭宣判罪名成立时必须判处死刑。这起案件引起一些人权分子注意,并发起运动指新加坡 的死 刑极不人道。

杨伟光的代表律师M拉维今年三月以有关强制性死刑有违宪法精神这个论点,向最高法院上诉庭提出上诉。由陈锡强大法官、潘文 龙法官和维克拉惹法官组成的三司于5月14日驳回上诉,大法官表示上诉庭已考虑了所有关于强制性死刑不合宪法的论点,并郑重声明日后任何上诉者都不允许对 强制性死刑不合宪法的论点老调重弹。

About givelife2ndchance

Give Life 2nd Chance is a movement dedicated to work on abolish death penalty in Malaysia.
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