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STANDARD OF PROOF

PRELIMINARY
NOTE: Although the EA seem to suggest a single standard of proof as being “so probable” to a “prudent man” in
s.3(3)‐(4), the EA did not abolish the historical distinction in common law between the two standards of proof
in civil and criminal cases because a prudent man would distinguish between the two (PP v Yuvaraj).

CRIMINAL CASES
Since the present case is a criminal proceeding, the starting point of the analysis is not neutral; an accused is
presumed innocent and the Prosecution has the burden to prove otherwise (Jagatheesan).

The standard of proof is ‘beyond all reasonable doubt’, i.e. the evidence must be so strong against a man such
that there is only a remote possibility – which is possible but not in the least probable – that he is innocent (Took
Leng How, Lord Denning in Miller).

Prosecution need not dispel “all conceivable doubts” but only reasonable doubts (Jagatheesan; Sakthivel).
Reasonable doubt is a ‘reasoned doubt’ supported by the evidence presented, or the lack of evidence submitted
if such evidence is necessary to support the Prosecution’s case (Jagatheesan). The court must articulate objective
and precise reasons, founded in the evidence submitted, before deciding whether the burden is discharged
(Jagatheesan).

CIVIL CASES
Since the present case is a civil proceeding, the standard is a ‘balance of probabilities’. The question is not
whether the plaintiff’s case is more probable than the defendant’s (Clarke v SilkAir; Popi M followed locally in
Wee Yue Chew) but whether the plaintiff’s case is “more probable than not” (Miller).

The court may decline both parties’ theories if evidence submitted is insufficient (Wee Yue Chew). Where a
crime needs to be proven in a civil case, e.g. fraud, the same standard of balance of probabilities applies, but
the quality of evidence needed to discharge it is higher. The more serious the allegation, the more “compelling”
and “cogent” evidence is required (Tang Yoke Kheng; Lord Hoffman in Aktieselskabat and Rehman).

The US concept of a third standard of ‘clear and convincing proof’ has been rejected by our courts as it will cause
confusion and lead to a slippery slope (Phang JA in Chua Kwee Chen and Wu Yang).
BURDEN OF PROOF
(A): BURDEN OF PROVING A FACT
Optional: Only if criminal case
In a criminal proceeding such as the present case, the starting point of the analysis is not neutral; an accused
is presumed innocent and the Prosecution has the burden to prove otherwise (Jagatheesan).

Here, (police/Pf) has the legal burden of proving that (a fact in issue: an element of the offence: e.g. he was
unfit for driving) (s 103, EA). In proving this fact in issue, the (police/Pf) also has the legal burden of proving that
(a relevant fact: he was intoxicated) (s 105, EA).

On the other hand, the (accused/Df) has the ‘evidential’ burden of proving that he did not (relevant fact does
not exist). As explained in Britestone, an evidential burden is the tactical onus to contradict, weaken or explain
away the evidence that has been led. Evidential burden, unlike legal burden, can and will shift throughout the
trial. It is strictly not a legal burden of proof because it does not prove or disprove a fact (Jeyasena) but merely
raises an issue for consideration.

(B): ACCUSED’S DEFENCE IS BOTH A STATUTORY DEFENCE AND A


CHALLENGE TO PROSECUTION’S CASE
**Woolmington position vs SG position
[1] Under s 107 of the EA, the accused bears the burden of proving that existence of a defence. As explained in
Jeyasena, s 107 reverses the position in common law in Woolmington where it was held that the prosecution
bears the burden of disproving any possible defence in issue, except insanity and statutory exception.

[2] However, a difficulty in applying s 107 arises in the present case where the accused alleged
intoxication/accident may be used both as a statutory defence as well as to challenge the prosecution’s case
that there was no requisite intention.

In Chanderasekera (endorsed in Jayasena), the court recognized a distinction between defences that negate an
element of the offence (where the legal burden is still on the Prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt)
and defences that admit the constitutive facts of the offence but plead excusatory conditions (where the legal
burden is on the Defence instead to prove on a balance of probabilities).

However, Chanderasekera seems to contradict Juma’at bin Samad where the court held that since intoxication
is a statutory defence, s 107 applies to place the legal burden of proving intoxication on the balance of
probabilities on the accused. However, the court in Juma’at bin Samad did not consider the Chanderasekera
distinction therefore the latter approach has not been rejected by our courts.

[3] It is submitted that the Chanderasekra approach should be preferred over Juma’at bin Samad. This is because,
as argued by Tan Yock Lin, a defence may fall short of reliance on an exception and care must be exercised in
ascertaining the true nature of the defence. If the accused is not seeking to rely on an exception but merely to
blunt the prosecution’s case, the court should not place the legal burden of proof on him. To do otherwise is to
court danger where the prosecution is unable even to rebut the possibility of a missing ingredient in its case
introduced by the defence evidence. This leads to greater possibility of wrongful convictions.

In Jayasena, the defence admitted the intention to kill and relied entirely upon private defence to
exculpate the accused. Hence, the Chandrasekra qualification did not apply.

In Juma’at, the accused who was charged with housebreaking argued that he was intoxicated. The court
preferred to strictly adhere to the terminology of the EA and held that because intoxication is a defence
in the Penal Code, s 107 of the EA required the accused to prove it on a balance of probabilities.

[4] Applying the Chanderasekra approach, if the accused wishes to rely on ______ as a statutory defence, he
bears the burden of proving it on the balance of probabilities. However, even if he fails to discharge the burden
he may nonetheless use ______ to create a reasonable doubt in the prosecution’s case.

(C): SPECIAL EXCEPTIONS/PROVISO IN ANY LAW DEFINING THE


OFFENCE (S 107)
**Depending on who you are representing, argue whether the particular provision is an essential element of the
offence or whether it is a defence that falls within s 107 implied (reverse burden of proof).
**Also look at question carefully. It may even ask where legal burden for proving liability provision should fall i.e.
proving licence.
The first issue that arises is whether s 1 of the Readers (Protection) Act creates an offence to which s 2 can be
relied on as a defence, or whether the sections must be read together, so that the book shop owner’s failure to
take reasonable precautions is one of the elements of the offence. If the latter is the correct interpretation, the
prosecution will have the burden of proving beyond reasonable doubt that there had been a failure to take
reasonable precautions. If the first suggestion is correct, the court will have to consider whether any, and if so
what, burden has been imposed by Parliament on the defendant.

On a literal construction of s 107, and following the holding in Jayasena, the accused bears the legal burden to
prove any special exceptions or proviso contained in any law defining the offence (Edwards; affirmed in Tan
Khee Wan Iris where s 107 was applied as a straightforward linguistic exercise).

However, Edwards has since been qualified in Hunt as an “excellent guide to construction” rather than a strict
rule. Prima facie, the Hunt constructive approach appears to contradict s 107 of the EA, which allocates burden
according to the classification of fact as element of exception or proviso and not parliament’s intention. The
literal approach was similarly applied in Tan Khee Wan Iris through s 107, EA. On the other hand, although the
court in Kum Chee Cheong applied the Hunt constructive approach, it was not done in the context of s 107.

It is submitted that the proper rationalization of the cases, as argued by Pinsler, is that the Hunt constructive
approach helps the court determine whether the exception in the provision is one of substance or form. Section
107 only applies when the exception is one of substance. Therefore, the Hunt constructive approach would be
compatible with s 107 of the EA.

Accordingly, we will now determine if the exception in s 5 of the Protection of Investors Act is one of substance
or form. Lord Griffiths in Hunt suggested three non-exhaustive guidelines for interpretation: 1) mischief at which
the Act was aimed, 2) relative ease of proof between parties, and 3) gravity of the offence.
#1: Mischief at which the Act was aimed
First, courts should be very slow to classify a defence as falling within s 107 of EA because Parliament can never
lightly be taken to have intended to impose an onerous duty on a defendant to prove his innocence (Lord
Griffiths in Hunt; endorsed in Kum Chee Cheong).

**Consider whether Parliamentary intent is to regulate conduct of a particular activity in the public interest.
Also note that deference must be given to Parliament’s decision.

In this case, the Protection of Investors Act appears/does not appear to impose an onerous duty on investment
advisers. It appears to be aimed at protecting vulnerable elderly investors from being lured into making risky
investments, which is in the public interest. The proof of lack of commission would prima facie show that the
investment adviser was unlikely to have placed undue pressure on the investor to enter into the transaction
because there would be no gain to be had.

#2: Relative ease of proof


Second, the ease and difficulty to be encountered by the parties in discharging the legal burden are of great
importance (Hunt; Kum Chee Cheong).

In Hunt, it was held that the regulation placed on the prosecution the burden of proving that the seized
morphine was in the prohibited form primarily because it was particularly onerous for the accused to prove
that the substance was not prohibited given that it has been seized by the police, and the prosecution
generally enjoys far better access to scientific testing equipment than the accused.

In Kum Chee Cheong, it was held that the regulation placed the burden of proving a valid third party
insurance policy on the accused because the regulation was targeted at ensuring users, such as the
accused, have such a policy and it was impossible or disproportionately difficult for the prosecution to
prove that that the accused did not have such a policy.

Possible solutions:
(1) To prevent the situation where an accused keeps absolutely quiet and puts the prosecution to
prove the absence of policy from scratch, the law should place the evidential burden of production
on the accused.
(2) The prosecution to discharge its s 103 burden need only prove a demand by the police to inspect
the insurance policy which was unrequited. Thereafter s 108 requires the accused to prove on a
balance of probabilities he actually had a valid insurance certificate.

In this case, __________________________.

Consider trade practices: It may indeed be easier for the book shop owner to establish that he took all
reasonable precautions because he is likely to be aware of current practices in his trade. Although
following common practice will not conclusively establish that all reasonable precautions were taken,
it may go some way towards doing so.

#3: Gravity of offence


Third, the gravity of the offence should be considered. The more serious the offence, the more likely it will be
that any ambiguity will be resolved in favour of the defendant (Hunt).
It was suggested in Lambert (2002) and in Davies (2002) that a strict responsibility might be placed on a
defendant where the legislation was concerned to regulate the conduct of a particular activity in the public
interest, for example, to promote health and safety.

On the other hand, it was said in Davies that the absence of a risk of imprisonment was an important factor
in deciding whether a reverse burden was legitimate. In this case there is a danger of imprisonment.

In this case, ____________.

Example: In this case, the offence is triable only on indictment; that an unlimited fine can be imposed;
that the premises can be forced to close indefinitely; and that a sentence of imprisonment of two years
can also be imposed. The financial penalties are potentially very severe; in contrast the maximum term
of imprisonment is light. Taking these matters into consideration, the offence seems not to be among
the gravest, though it is by no means trivial.

Conclusion
Accordingly, given that (evaluation of the 3 guidelines), just like in (Hunt – if burden placed on P/Kum Chee
Cheong – if burden placed on A), it is likely that the courts would impose the legal burden on
(accused/prosecution), and hence the accused would have to prove on a balance of probabilities that___ / and
hence the Prosecution has to prove beyond all reasonable doubt that ___.

IN BOTH SCENARIOS, GO ON FURTHER TO SEE IF THE ALLEGED EXCEPTION/CONDITION A IS ESPECIALLY WITHIN THE
KNOWLEDGE OF THE ACCUSED.

See next section.

(D): ESPECIAL KNOWLEDGE (S 108)


[*] Section 108 may be used in three situations:
 1) In the context of Penal Code offences (Mary Ng; Abdul Naser);
 2) In the context of implied burdens in other statutes defining criminal offences (Kum Chee Cheong);
and
 3) In civil cases (Surender Singh).
o Professor Pinsler: Section 108 is more readily applied in civil cases because, firstly, the danger
of an improper finding is not as threatening, and secondly, parties in a civil case are expected
to explain their positions fully to meet the legal burden or evidential burden on an issue.
However, even in civil cases, the court must ensure that the conditions of s 108 are clearly
satisfied before requiring a party to prove a fact which the other party is required to prove
pursuant to s 103 – 105 of the EA.

Prosecution may argue that whether the accused has the requisite licence is especially within the knowledge of
the accused, thus s 108 applies and the burden is on the accused to show that he did not _____.

[1] Following Jayasena, the “burden of proving” under s 108 refers to the legal burden. A wide or literal
construction of s 108 will therefore reverse the burden of proof of the essential elements of the prosecution’s
case which by s 103 is cast on the Prosecution. Judging from the trend in case law, courts have not applied the
literal construction of s 108 (Mary Ng; Abdul Naser).
Mary Ng concerned a charge of attempted cheating. The Privy Council advised that it was not for the
accused to prove that she had not acted deceitfully; rather it was for the prosecution to prove beyond a
reasonable doubt that she had so acted.

Abdul Naser concerned an alleged murder of a tourist during a robbery. SGCA held that it was not for the
accused to prove that he had accidentally stepped on the deceased’s face but it was for the prosecution
to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused intentionally stamped on the deceased’s face
thereby causing her death.

[2] Positive test: Instead, s 108 is only applicable in “certain exceptional cases where it would be impossible or
at any rate disproportionately difficult for the prosecution to establish facts which are “especially” or
“particularly” within the knowledge of the accused which an accused can prove without difficulty or
inconvenience” (Constance Chee at [95]).

[3] Negative test: Further, s 108 would therefore not be applicable when the facts were such that they were
capable of being known by a person other than the accused or Df (Surender Singh at [217]).

[4] Restriction: As for whether prosecution/plaintiff must show a prima facie case of fact in question before the
legal burden is cast on the accused, such a view has been rejected by the SGCA in Kum Chee Cheong. Although
it was revived by the HC in Surender Singh, it is submitted that because the EA does not provide for such a
requirement and that Surender Singh is merely a HC case, this requirement should not be followed.

In Surender Singh, the family of a deceased sued the hospital for failure to monitor the deceased properly.
Court held that a mere allegation by the plaintiffs was insufficient to invoke s 108 of the EA. The plaintiffs
had to first establish a prima facie case against the hospital that the deceased was not monitored.

In this case, prima facie case had been established through the testimony of the deceased's sister‐in‐
law that the deceased was not monitored before and at around 1600 hours.

Even so, for completeness, in the present case, a prima facie case has been established through __________.

**only if can prove prima facie case

[5] Note that s 108 applies only to facts especially within knowledge which is contrary to an inference
suggested by the established facts.

[6] In practice, s 108, EA is used only for minor regulatory offences where it is practically easier for the accused
to prove the facts.

CONCLUSION

Accordingly, since 1) it is disproportionately difficult for the prosecution to prove that ______, which is within
the knowledge of the defendant/accused and which he could easily prove, and 2) the facts are such that they
are not capable of being known by a person other than the accused, s 108 applies and the burden is on the
defendant/accused to produce proof of _____.
(E): ALIBI DEFENCE (S 105)
[1] While it is uncertain whether the alibi defence truly exists within the EA framework given that it merely
appears in the illustration of a provision, courts seem to treat it as one. In any case, because the alibi defence is
a non‐statutory defence, s 107 of the EA does not apply.

[2] Following Jayasena (that there is only a single burden of proof in the EA), illustration (b) to s 105 imposes
the legal burden on the accused to prove his alibi.

However, in Syed Abdul Aziz, the CA held that s 105 only impose an evidential burden on the accused to raise a
reasonable doubt that he was elsewhere at the material time and the legal burden is still on the prosecution to
prove beyond reasonable doubt that the accused could not rely on his alibi. Therefore, Syed Abdul Aziz seems
to contradict Jayasena.

[3] To reconcile the cases, it is submitted that a better interpretation of s 105 is to employ the reasoning in
Chanderasekera (endorsed in Jayasena) that there is distinction between defences that adversely affect the
proof of constitutive facts in the Prosecution’s case and defences that admit the constitutive facts of the offence
but plead justificatory or excusatory conditions.

Employing the Chanderasekera distinction, the Prosecution has the legal burden of proving beyond reasonable
doubt that the accused was at the scene of the crime at the material time and the accused merely has an
evidential burden to raise reasonable doubt that he was not there.

On the other hand, if the accused wishes to positively assert that he was somewhere else, he has the legal
burden to prove it on the balance of probabilities per s 105.

CONCLUSION

Therefore, in the present case, _____ merely has to raise a reasonable doubt that he was not at the scene of
the crime at the material time.

(F): STATUTORY PRESUMPTIONS


1. Presumptions of fact: not mandatory that on proof on a basic fact that you must find the presumed fact.
‐ E.g. The fact the accused is an accomplice does not mean his testimony is unreliable. Only use the
presumption if there is no forthcoming evidence. E.g. s 116
2. Presumption of Law: basic fact  leads to automatic presumption of fact (mandatory)
i. Irrebuttable: e.g. former s 115 (repealed) – a boy under 13 incapable of rape. No longer have complete
irrebutability
ii. Limited rebutability: e.g s 114: child is son of the husband. Only can be rebutted via the 2 ways
stipulated in the EA. Cannot use DNA to rebut also (AD v AE).
iii. Rebuttable Presumptions:
a) Attack the basic fact: I don’t have such an amount of drug
b) Attack the presumed fact: The drug is not for consumption

REBUTTABLE PRESUMPTIONS OF LAW IN OTHER STATUTES MDA (AND PCA)


Look out for words such as “unless the contrary is proved”, “unless it is proved”, “shall be presumed’, and
“shall be deemed”
1. The proof of one fact (e.g. fact A) will trigger the court’s presumption of another fact (e.g. fact B).
This is when the accused’s burden to disprove the presumed fact B springs up!
2. Note that these presumptions are different from the earlier situation of implied burdens in other
statutes
– e.g. “Except as authorised under this Act... it shall be an offence to ...”

The effect of a legal presumption is to shift the burden of proof in relation to certain facts.

**If one provision states an irrebuttable presumption and another provides for a defence, clarify and say that
in substance the presumption is not irrebuttable but rather of limited rebuttability, i.e. presumption can be
rebutted by proving that (A intended to consume the chicken).

When a statute provides for the operation of a rebuttable presumption of law, the accused must disprove the
presumed fact on a balance of probabilities (Yuvuyaj; Tan Kiam Peng).

The use of such rebuttable presumptions of law to impose the legal burden on the accused has been criticised
as being in conflict with the presumption of innocence which has been hailed as the “cornerstone of the
criminal justice system” (see XP v PP).

However, the courts have justified such presumptions on policy grounds (Yuvaraj and Tan Kiam Peng) and in
relation to crimes which have a particularly abhorrent effect on the society as a whole. The argument is that in
the absence of such presumptions, potential offenders would commit such crimes with impunity, confident of
avoiding conviction.

Corruption
In Yuvaraj, Lord Diplock stated that “corruption in the public service is a grave social evil which is
difficult to detect, for those who take part in it will be at pains to cover their tracks.”

The function of the provision is to prevent public officers from committing the act of accepting a gift in
cash unless he can show clearly that he has legitimate reasons for doing so.

Drugs
In Tan Kiam Peng, Andrew Phang JA stated, “a frustration of the general policy of the Act generate not
only social ills and tragedy but also simultaneously violate the individual rights of those who are
adversely and directly impacted by the availability of controlled drugs on the open market.” (at [75]).

Drugs
Chan Sek Keong AG, Singapore Crime Control Model: “heroin and addictive drugs are one of the great
social evils in modern society. They destroy people and profit the destroyers. If the Prosecution has to
prove the act of trafficking, as ordinarily understood, in every case, there will be very few convictions for
trafficking and a resultant loss of public confidence in the criminal justice system. Hence, the need for a
broad definition of “trafficking” and also for presumptions.”

IRREBUTTABLE PRESUMPTION OF LAW


[1] Upon proof of A, the court must presume B.
[2] Conclusive proof is defined by s 4(3) of the EA:
 When one fact is declared by [the Evidence Act] to be conclusive proof of another, the court shall, on
proof the one fact, regard the other as proved, and shall not allow evidence to be given for the purpose
of disproving it.
For example, former s. 115 of the EA (repealed in 1996) is an irrebuttable presumption of law that a
boy under the age of 13 is incapable of committing rape.

REBUTTABLE PRESUMPTION OF LAW IN THE EA


[1] Section 4(2) of the EA states that “whenever it is directed by [the Evidence Act] that the court shall presume
a fact, it shall regard such fact as proved unless and until it is disproved.”
 Note that s 4(2) only concerns disproving presumptions of law in the EA. It is not relevant in
considering presumptions found in other statutes such as the Misuse of Drugs Act or Prevention of
Corruption Act.

[2] Sections 81 to 87 provide for rebuttable presumptions of law in relation to the due execution of documents.
 In all these sections, the phrase “the court shall presume” is used. See s 4(2) of the EA.

[3] Sections 109 to 113 also involve rebuttable presumptions but these provisions use a different terminology
to those just discussed.
 S 109 provides that a man is presumed to be alive if he has been shown to be alive within the last 30
 years. Once this fact is shown, the party who seeks to show that he is dead must prove this.
 The presumption of the continuance of life in s 109 may be countered by the presumption of death
under s 110 if it is proved (by the party seeking to show that the man is dead) that the man has not
been heard of for the last 7 years by persons who would have naturally have heard of him. If this fact
is proved, the presumption of death operates and the party alleging that the man is alive must prove
that this is so.

In re Wong Sook Mun Christina, the applicant sought an order from the court declaring that the father
be presumed dead. The application was made in reliance on s 110 of the EA. SGHC held that s 110 of
the EA had to be read with s 109 of the EA; s 110 was viewed as a proviso to s 109. In order to satisfy
both elements of s 110, not only must the applicant's father not have been heard of for seven years,
he must also not have been heard of by those who would naturally have heard of him if he had been
alive. As the father had severed all ties with the family, the applicant and her family could not fall
within the category of persons mentioned in s 110. The father was wholly and totally estranged from
his family and, from his conduct, appeared to want to have nothing more to do with them.

In any event, the applicant had not taken sufficient steps to ascertain whether or not her father was
still alive. On a literal construction of s 110, it might be argued that the provision did not include this
particular requirement. However, at common law and as a matter of both logic and common sense,
such a requirement ought to be incorporated as part of s 110.

PRESUMPTION OF FACT
[1] Section 4(1) of the EA states that “whenever it is provided by this Act that the court may presume a fact,
it may either regard such fact as proved unless and until it is disproved, or may call for proof of it.”
 This is the weakest form of presumption because unlike irrebuttable and rebuttable presumptions
 of law, the court is not compelled to apply the presumption of fact.
 It is a factual inference drawn by the courts as a matter of common sense unless it is appropriate to
do.

[2] No restriction is placed on the type of facts that may be presumed, and the list of illustrations under s
116, EA show some of the circumstances in which the presumptions may arise. The court is directed to take
into consideration certain facts relating to each illustration in deciding whether or not a particular
presumption ought to apply.

116. The court may presume the existence of any fact which it thinks likely to have happened, regard being
had to the common course of natural events, human conduct, and public and private business, in their
relation to the facts of the particular case .

Illustrations

The court may presume —

(a) that a man who is in possession of stolen goods soon after the theft is either the thief or has received the
goods knowing them to be stolen, unless he can account for his possession;

(b) that an accomplice is unworthy of credit and his evidence needs to be treated with caution;

12.30 Illustration (b) to s 116 of the Evidence Act (Cap 97, 1997 Rev Ed) provides that the court may
presume that an accomplice is unworthy of credit and that his evidence needs to be treated with caution.
The presumption is not mandatory but discretionary. Whether caution is in fact required vis‐à-vis a
particular witness is very much dependent on the facts and circumstances of the case: Chua Keem Leong
v PP [1996] 1 SLR 510. The rationale for such caution is that the accomplice is an interested party, who
may have reasons of his own to exaggerate the culpability of or implicate the accused, while reducing the
magnitude or importance of his own involvement in the matter: Tan Khee Koon v PP [1995] 3 SLR 724.
12.31 The approach that the court takes in respect of accomplice evidence is to test the evidence
against the objective facts as well as the inherent probabilities and improbabilities. If there is no
discernible attempt on the part of the accomplice to minimise his own involvement or exaggerate that of
the accused and his evidence is found to be consistent as a whole and reliable on a review of the whole
evidence, there is no reason why the evidence should be treated as unreliable: Chai Chien Wei Kelvin v PP
[1999] 1 SLR 25.

12.32 In Mohd Aslam s/o Jahandad v PP [2006] 2 SLR 511, the question arose as to whether a particular
witness was an accomplice and whether the trial judge had failed to treat his evidence with the requisite
degree of caution. The appellant was convicted of abetting a company to make a false statement to the
Ministry of Manpower that they would employ a foreign worker (“PW1”) in order to obtain an
employment pass for PW1. At the trial, PW1 testified that he was employed by the appellant instead. On
appeal, the appellant contended that the trial judge failed to treat PW1’s evidence with caution, which
was required under illustration (b) to s 116 of the Evidence Act. The High Court held that in relation to a
witness who had neither pleaded guilty to nor been convicted of the offence in question, he should be
regarded as an accomplice only if there was sufficient evidence to reasonably infer that he was a
participant in the offence (see also Chai Chien Wei Kelvin v PP at [54]). In this case, there was no evidence
to show that PW1 had participated in the making of the false statement to the Ministry of Manpower.
There was therefore no basis for treating PW1’s evidence as accomplice evidence.
(c) that a bill of exchange accepted or endorsed was accepted or endorsed for good consideration;

(d) that a thing or state of things which has been shown to be in existence within a period shorter than that
within which such things or states of things usually cease to exist is still in existence;

(e) that judicial and official acts have been regularly performed;

(f) that the common course of business has been followed in particular cases;

(g) that evidence which could be and is not produced would if produced be unfavourable to the person who
withholds it;

(h) that if a man refuses to answer a question which he is not compelled to answer by law, the answer if given
would be unfavourable to him;

(i) that when a document creating an obligation is in the hands of the obligor the obligation has been discharged.

But the court shall also have regard to such facts as the following in considering whether such maxims do or
do not apply to the particular case before it:

as to illustration (a)—a shop-keeper has in his till a marked dollar soon after it was stolen and cannot account
for its possession specifically but is continually receiving dollars in the course of his business;

as to illustration (b)— A, a person of the highest character is tried for causing a man’s death by an act of
negligence in arranging certain machinery. B, a person of equally good character, who also took part in the
arrangement, describes precisely what was done and admits and explains the common carelessness of A and
himself;

as to illustration (b)—a crime is committed by several persons. A, B and C, 3 of the criminals, are captured on
the spot and kept apart from each other. Each gives an account of the crime implicating D, and the accounts
corroborate each other in such a manner as to render previous concert highly improbable;

as to illustration (c)— A, the drawer of a bill of exchange, was a man of business. B, the acceptor, was a young
and ignorant person completely under A’s influence;

as to illustration (d)—it is proved that a river ran in a certain course 5 years ago, but it is known that there have
been floods since that time which might change its course;

as to illustration (e)—a judicial act, the regularity of which is in question, was performed under exceptional
circumstances;

as to illustration (f)—the question is whether a letter was received. It is shown to have posted, but the usual
course of the post was interrupted by disturbances:

as to illustration (g)—a man refuses to produce a document which would bear on a contract of small importance
on which he is sued, but which might also injure the feeling and reputation of his family:
as to illustration (h)—a man refuses to answer a question which he is not compelled by law to answer, but the
answer to it might cause loss to him in matters unconnected with the matter in relation to which it is asked:

as to illustration (i)—a bond is in possession of the obligor, but the circumstances of the case are such that he
may have stolen it.