The Justice Statement
State Courts Logo
History of State Courts
Court Governance and Administration
Construction of State Courts Towers
Join us as a Court Volunteer
List of Court Volunteers
Positions in State Courts
[For lawyers only] Common e-filing errors in eLit
How do I start a civil proceeding?
How do I file a claim against my neighbour
How do I file a Magistrate’s Complaint against a harasser or stalker
How do I file a Magistrate's Complaint?
How do I file an appeal against a sentence or order made by the Court
How do I conduct a criminal case myself
How do I apply for court records
FAQ about Night Courts
EMPLOYMENT CLAIMS TRIBUNALS
Types of Claims which the ECT can hear
Before filing a Claim
Filing a Claim
After a Claim is filed
Settlement of disputes and Appeals
Compliance and Enforcement of Settlement Agreement and Tribunal Order
SMALL CLAIMS TRIBUNALS
How do I appeal against the Registrar's discontinuance order to the Referee (Small Claims Tribunals)?
How do I enforce an order of the Small Claims Tribunals
How do I file an appeal to the High Court against the decision of the Referee, Small Claims Tribunals
How do I file for debt recovery
How do I file a claim at the Small Claims Tribunals
Small Claims Tribunals
Virtual Tour of Courtrooms
Annual Reports 2003 to 2016
Employment Claims Tribunals
Annual Workplan Speeches
Annual Workplan Speeches and Themes
FAQs on court reporting
Legislation and Practice Directions
International Framework for Court Excellence
International Consortium for Court Excellence
Judiciary Times (newsletter)
State Courts Judgment
Judgments published by LawNet
English to Chinese - Glossary of Terms
English to Malay - Glossary of Terms
English to Tamil - Glossary of Terms
SINGAPORE GOVERNMENT WEBSITES
Community Mediation Centre
Family Justice Courts
Insolvency and Public Trustee's Office
Legal Aid Bureau
Ministry of Education
Ministry of Law
Ministry of Social and Family Development
National Youth Council
Supreme Court of Singapore
Asean Law Association
Community Development Councils
Criminal Legal Aid Scheme
SG Heart Map
Singapore Academy of Law
Singapore Children's Society
Singapore Institute of Legal Education
Singapore International Arbitration Centre
Singapore Mediation Centre
The Law Society of Singapore
Criminal Justice Model
The criminal justice process is founded on two cardinal principles, namely, the supremacy of the rule of law as well as the protection of the public.
Singapore is a small island nation of 660 square kilometres. It is densely populated and supports a large number of communities with diverse religious, economic and cultural backgrounds. The integrity and the survival of our nation is greatly dependent on the social cohesiveness of and the harmony that exists amongst the various communities. Maintenance of the law and order is paramount. Keenly aware of the need to protect the public, State Courts Judges have sought to deter criminals and to prevent crime by consistently meting out sentences that reflect the sanctity of the law and the necessity to maintain a stable social order. For transgressors of the law, justice is meted out swiftly and with certainty.
State Courts believe that they can best discharge their duty as the guardian of the rule of law by constantly reviewing and improving their work processes as well as implementing new initiatives and strengthening their strategic partnerships with external agencies, both within and outside Singapore. In this regard, all criminal courts and processes are regularly and constantly reviewed with a view to enhancing the justice process in Singapore.
Parties in a court proceeding
District Judges preside over cases in the District Courts. They are appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Chief Justice. In some cases, District Judges also preside over Magistrates' Courts cases. In criminal cases, a District Judge can hear offences where the maximum imprisonment term does not exceed 10 years or are punishable with a fine only. A District Judge may pass any of the following sentences:
Where the law expressly provides for it, the District Judge can also hear offences and impose sentences which exceed the above limits.
Magistrates are appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Chief Justice. Magistrates preside over Magistrates' Courts. Magistrates also deal with complaints of criminal offences by aggrieved persons made on oath. These are called Magistrates' Complaints.
In criminal cases, a Magistrate can hear offences where the maximum imprisonment term does not exceed 3 years or are punishable with a fine only. A Magistrate may pass any of the following sentences:
However, where the law expressly provides for it, the Magistrates' Courts also have the jurisdiction to try offences and impose sentences which exceed the above limits.
Prosecutors conduct criminal proceedings in court on behalf of the State. Depending on the type of cases, a Deputy Public Prosecutor, Assistant Public Prosecutor, Police Prosecutor or a Departmental Prosecutor may be present in court. In certain minor cases, such as those dealt with by way of Magistrate's Complaint, he may be the Complainant himself or his lawyer.
A witness is one who makes or gives oral statements of facts to a judge in open court or in a judge's hearing chambers. A witness has to be sworn or affirmed before his evidence is given. He must be a person who is competent to give evidence and is of sound mind.
An accused is one who has been charged with an offence or a crime in a criminal court. An accused person is produced at a Criminal Mentions Court when the prosecution is ready to formally file charges against him. This takes place no longer than 48 hours after his arrest and remand. If the accused person is on police bail, he will be similarly asked to attend Court once the prosecution is ready to formally file charges against him.
You are being redirected to an external source.
Do you want to proceed?
Thank you for your feedback.
Oops, that can't be blank....