Ganesun s/o Kannan v Public Prosecutor

JurisdictionSingapore
CourtHigh Court (Singapore)
JudgeYong Pung How CJ
Judgment Date19 September 1996
Neutral Citation[1996] SGHC 210
Citation[1996] SGHC 210
Subject MatterCriminal Procedure and Sentencing,ss 244, 266 & 268 Criminal Procedure Code (Cap 68),Appeal,Trial judge's refusal to exercise discretion to withdraw guilty plea,Proper procedure by revision,Principles applied in exercise of discretion
Defendant CounselLee Seng Lit and Janet Wang (Deputy Public Prosecutor)
Published date19 September 2003
Plaintiff CounselS Shankar (SK Kumar & Associates)
Docket NumberMagistrate's Appeal No 85 of 1996
Date19 September 1996

The appellant, who was a hawker, operated an Indian food stall named Bilai Muslim Food at Bee Huat Eating House in Yishun. On 10 August 1995, enforcement officers from the Ministry of Labour arrested one Indian overstayer, Durasamy Devarajan, and one Sri Lankan overstayer, Mohamed Nazar Yusoof Kamal, at the appellant&`s food stall. They were both found to be working when they were arrested. In fact, the Sri Lankan national, Mohamed Nazar, was found to have overstayed in Singapore for no less than 94 days.

The appellant was thus charged under s 57(1)(e) of the Immigration Act (Cap 133) (the Act) with the offence of employing a Sri Lankan national, Mohamed Nazar, who had overstayed on his visit pass in contravention of s 15(1) of the Act. The appellant pleaded guilty to this charge. As a result, a second charge of the same nature under s 57 of the Act was taken into consideration. In the second charge, the appellant was indicted for employing Durasamy Devarajan, an Indian national, as a general worker at the stall when he had overstayed his visit pass, in contravention of s 15(1) of the Act.

The facts of this case were largely found on the statement of facts, which was admitted by the appellant without qualification at the trial below. The appellant admitted that sometime on 18 May 1995, the licensee of the stall, one Ganapathy s/o Murugayan, informed the appellant that he would be leaving Singapore for India at the end of the month. He requested the appellant to take care of his stall business. The appellant was told to engage his own workers to operate the stall. He agreed and began operating the stall a month later.

When the appellant went to take over the business on 18 June 1995, he saw Mohamed Nazar making the roti prata at the stall. The appellant informed him that he would be taking over the stall business and he would continue to employ him to make the roti prata for a daily wage of $50.00. On 21 June 1995, Mohamed Nazar told the appellant that he was an overstayer. However, the appellant continued to employ him until he was arrested on 10 August 1995. In fact, the appellant had last paid his wages on 9 August 1995, the day before he was arrested.

The appellant pleaded guilty to the first charge on 29 February 1996, and the second charge was taken into consideration. The case was adjourned to 25 March 1996 for sentencing and bail was extended. On that day, counsel for the appellant, Mr Subir Singh, applied for a discharge and informed the court that Mr SK Kumar would be taking over the case.

Mr Kumar then informed the court that the appellant wished to retract his plea of guilty made on 29 February 1996, for the following reasons. First, the appellant was not the employer but was, in fact, an employee himself, the employer being the said Ganapathy s/o Murugayan, the licensee of the stall. Second, the appellant had pleaded guilty because he was not confident that the documents he needed for his defence would arrive in time for the trial.

The...

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38 cases
  • Shan Kai Weng v Public Prosecutor
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 6 November 2003
    ...ensure that a plea of guilt can safely form a basis for conviction. The test has been definitively laid down in Ganesun s/o Kannan v PP [1996] 3 SLR 560, and followed in Rajeevan Edakalavan v PP [1998] 1 SLR 815 and Koh Thian Huat v PP [2002] 3 SLR 28. As such, the following safeguards must......
  • Balasubramanian Palaniappa Vaiyapuri v Public Prosecutor
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 23 January 2002
    ...1 SLR 815. 22 The test in determining the validity of the plea of guilt had been definitively laid down in Ganesun s/o Kannan v PP [1996] 3 SLR 560 and Rajeevan Edakalavan (supra). It was held that the following safeguards must be observed before the plea would be deemed valid and unequivoc......
  • Teo Hee Heng v Public Prosecutor
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 4 July 2000
    ...Public Prosecutor) for the respondent. Ang Poh Chuan v PP [1995] 3 SLR (R) 929; [1996] 1 SLR 326 (folld) Ganesun s/o Kannan v PP [1996] 3 SLR (R) 125; [1996] 3 SLR 560 (folld) Lee Weng Tuck v Public Prosecutor [1989] 2 MLJ 143 (folld) Mok Swee Kok v PP [1994] 3 SLR (R) 134; [1994] 3 SLR 140......
  • Lee Eng Hock v Public Prosecutor
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 1 February 2002
    ...1 SLR (R) 122; [2002] 1 SLR 192 (folld) Chua Qwee Teck v PP [1990] 2 SLR (R) 571; [1991] SLR 857 (folld) Ganesun s/o Kannan v PP [1996] 3 SLR (R) 125; [1996] 3 SLR 560 (folld) R v Peace [1976] Crim LR 119 (refd) R v Turner [1970] 2 QB 321; [1970] 2 All ER 281 (distd) Criminal Procedure Code......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1 books & journal articles
  • Case Note - THE LAW ON THE RETRACTION AND QUALIFICATION OF PLEAS
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Journal Nbr. 2020, December 2020
    • 1 December 2020
    ...(Cap 68, 2012 Rev Ed). 9 See Koh Bak Kiang v Public Prosecutor [2016] 2 SLR 574 at [42] and Ganesun s/o Kannan v Public Prosecutor [1996] 3 SLR(R) 125 at [15]–[20]. 10 Ganesun s/o Kannan v Public Prosecutor [1996] 3 SLR(R) 125 at [20]. 11 See Lee Weng Tuck v Public Prosecutor [1989] 2 MLJ 1......

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