J Balasubramaniam v Public Prosecutor

CourtHigh Court (Singapore)
JudgeKarthigesu J
Judgment Date27 April 1992
Neutral Citation[1992] SGHC 105
Citation[1992] SGHC 105
Published date24 September 2012
Plaintiff CounselV Ramakrishnan (V Ramakrishnan & Co)
Defendant CounselLau Wing Yum (Deputy Public Prosecutor)



On 27 March 1992 I dismissed the appellant's application to reserve four questions of law for the decision of the Court of Criminal Appeal pursuant to s 60 of the Supreme Court of Judicature Act. I did not feel it necessary to hear the learned deputy public prosecutor, but I did have the benefit of reading his written submissions. The appellant has now appealed against my decision.

The questions of law reserved are the following:

'Question A

Whether spiking/lacing of a person's drink unknown to him, by another person amounts to 'special reasons' within of s 67(2) of the Road Traffic Act (Cap 276), so as to enable the court to exercise its discretion not to impose disqualification.

Question B

If the answer to Question A is Yes whether the Appellant/ Applicant has to establish:-

i) that the drink he was consuming was a non-alcoholic or a low alcoholic content beverage which was spiked/ laced with a drink of a high alcoholic content by another person OR

ii) that the drink he was consuming was of a high alcoholic content (exceeding the legal limit) to which an equally high alcoholic drink was spiked/laced by another person.

The English decisions in Williams v Neale RTR 149; DPP v Barker RTR 1 and DPP v Younas RTR 22 have not specifically dealt with the point raised in (ii) above and there being no local decision on this point, an important point of law of public importance is raised for decision.

Question C

1) Whether the Appellant/Applicant has to adduce medical/ scientific evidence to prove that if not for the spiked/ laced drink, his blood alcoholic content would not have exceeded the legal limit.

2) Whether the court, in the absence of medical/scientific evidence and the prosecution not applying for such evidence to be adduced, could find as a fact that the spiked/laced drink was the cause of the high alcoholic content in the blood, which exceeded the legal limit. (Pg 14 of the learned magistrate's grounds of decision).

Question D

Whether mens rea is a necessary ingredient in the offence provided under s 67 of the Road Traffic Act. If the answer is yes whether it could amount to a defence if it could be established that the drink was spiked/laced. (Pg 10 and 11 of the learned magistrate's grounds of decision).

Question E

1) To what extent the decisions in Williams v Neale; DPP v Barker and DPP v Younas are applicable in construing the meaning of 'special reasons' under s 67(2) of the Road Traffic Act.

2) Whether, if the prosecution failed to challenge the factual basis of the mitigation plea, the court could regard that the facts...

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1 cases
  • Yeo Hwee Hua and Others v Public Prosecutor
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 8 June 1995
    ...Prosecutor) for the respondent. Abdul Salam bin Mohamed Salleh v PP [1991] 2 SLR (R) 344; [1991] SLR 235 (folld) Balasubramaniam v PP [1992] SGHC 105 (folld) Chan Hiang Leng Colin v PP [1995] 1 SLR (R) 388; [1995] 1 SLR 687 (folld) Koh Hak Boon v PP [1993] 2 SLR (R) 733; [1993] 3 SLR 427 (r......
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