TRIAL AND PUNISHMENT BY DISCIPLINARY OFFICERS
—(1) Before an allegation against a person subject to this Act (referred to in this Act as the accused) that he has committed a service offence is further proceeded with, the allegation shall be reported, in the form of a charge, to a disciplinary officer and dealt with in accordance with this Part.
(2) A disciplinary officer when dealing with a charge against an accused —
shall refer the charge to the Commissioner if the accused is a public officer or he considers that the charge ought to be dealt with by a court;
may dismiss the charge if he is of the opinion that it ought not to be further proceeded with; or
may try the accused.
(3) References in this Act to dealing with a charge by a disciplinary officer are references to the taking by the appropriate disciplinary officer, as the case may require, of the following action, that is to say, determining whether the accused is guilty, dismissing the charge or recording a finding of guilt accordingly, and awarding punishment.
71. A charge against an accused who is a public officer may, if the Commissioner thinks fit, be referred to the Public Service Commission for the member to be dealt with by the Public Service Commission in accordance with the regulations governing disciplinary proceedings against officers in the public service.
—(1) If the accused is an officer below the rank of lieutenant-colonel, the charge shall, within such time as may be prescribed, be brought before a senior disciplinary officer who is at least two ranks above him.
(2) If the accused is a warrant officer, the charge shall, within such time as may be prescribed, be brought before a senior disciplinary officer.
(3) If the accused is a serviceman below the rank of warrant officer, the charge shall, within such time as may be prescribed, be brought before a junior disciplinary officer.
73. A person who is subject to this Act pursuant to section 16 may be tried for an offence committed while he was a member only by a court.
74. Where a disciplinary officer dismisses a charge, he shall record the reason for the dismissal of the charge.
—(1) Where a disciplinary officer finds an accused guilty of a charge, he may award one of the following punishments:
if the accused is a serviceman, detention for a period not exceeding 40 days;
a fine not exceeding $100 or, if the accused is an officer, a fine not exceeding $300;
such other minor punishment as may be prescribed by the regulations.
(2) Where a disciplinary officer is of the opinion that the accused should be reduced in rank in addition to or in lieu of any punishment which may be awarded by him he may refer the charge and the record of the proceedings to the Commissioner with a recommendation that the accused be reduced in rank and the Commissioner may at his discretion reduce the rank of the accused in addition to or in substitution for the punishment imposed by the disciplinary officer.
(3) In addition to any of the punishments referred to in subsection (1), a disciplinary officer may order an officer or serviceman found guilty of any offence under this Act to pay compensation, not exceeding $100, to any person who suffered damage or loss occasioned by the commission of the service offence.
(4) In addition to or in lieu of any other punishment, a disciplinary officer may order the accused to pay such sum as he may determine as compensation to the Government for the loss of or damage to any service property or part thereof occasioned by the commission of the service offence and, in assessing the amount of compensation payable under this subsection, the disciplinary officer shall have regard to the earnings of the accused.
(5) Nothing in subsection (3) shall prejudice the right of any person to a civil remedy for the recovery of damages beyond the amount of compensation ordered.
—(1) A charge against an officer of the rank of lieutenant-colonel or above may be dealt with by a Disciplinary Board consisting of 3 persons appointed for the purpose, either generally or specially, by the Minister.
(2) A Disciplinary Board may dismiss the charge if it thinks that the charge ought not to be proceeded with or may deal with the case and upon conviction of the accused may impose a reprimand and in addition may make a recommendation to the Commissioner that the accused be reduced in rank and the Commissioner may at his discretion reduce the rank of the accused.
—(1) A sentence of detention imposed as a punishment shall take effect from the date on which it was passed, unless the disciplinary officer passing the sentence otherwise directs.
(2) Where a person convicted of a service offence was already under service custody prior to the date on which an order for his detention was made, the sentence of detention shall take effect from the date he was in service custody.
78. A person sentenced to detention under this Act shall, unless otherwise provided for in the regulations, serve his sentence in detention barracks.
—(1) It shall be lawful for a disciplinary officer when passing a sentence of detention to order that the sentence shall be suspended and the accused shall not in that event be committed to detention barrack.
(2) Where any such sentence is suspended and the offender so sentenced is sentenced for a fresh offence during the period of suspension by a disciplinary officer to detention, then the disciplinary officer may cancel the suspension of the earlier sentence and the disciplinary officer shall direct whether the two sentences are to run concurrently or consecutively.
—(1) Any person who, having been sentenced to detention under this Act, is at large may (without prejudice to any other power of arrest) be arrested by any police officer or any officer of the Force or a provost officer without warrant and taken to any place in which he may be required to be detained in accordance with this Act or the regulations.
(2) Where any person sentenced to detention under this Act is at large at any time during the period for which he is liable to be detained in pursuance of the sentence, no account shall be taken, in calculating the period for which he is liable to be so detained, of any time elapsing after he was at large and before either he is taken into custody or he is received into a detention barrack.
—(1) The Commissioner shall appoint an officer or officers (hereinafter referred to as the reviewing authority) to act for the purposes of this section in any particular case or any class of cases.
(2) No person shall be appointed to be or act as the reviewing authority unless he is a qualified person within the meaning of the Legal Profession Act (Cap. 217).
(3) Where a charge has been dealt with by a disciplinary officer otherwise than by the dismissal thereof, the reviewing authority shall as soon as practicable review the finding or award.
(4) Where on a review under this section it appears to the reviewing authority expedient to do so by reason of any mistake in law in the proceedings on the dealing with the charge or of anything occurring in those proceedings which in the opinion of the reviewing authority involved substantial injustice to the accused, the reviewing authority may quash the finding and may order a re-trial if it considers that a re-trial is necessary in the interests of justice.
(5) If a finding in any proceedings is quashed under subsection (4) and the award made in those proceedings relates only to the finding quashed, the reviewing authority shall also quash the award; and if the award relates also to any other finding and it appears to the reviewing authority that the award was not warranted by this Act in respect of that other finding, the reviewing authority may vary the award by substituting such punishment as the reviewing authority may think proper, being a punishment which could have been included in the original award in relation to that other finding, and not being in the opinion of the reviewing authority more severe than the punishment included in the original award.
(6) Where on a review under this section it appears to the reviewing authority that a punishment awarded was invalid, or too severe, the reviewing authority may vary the award by substituting such punishment as the reviewing authority may think proper, being a punishment which could have been included in the original award and not being in the opinion of the reviewing authority more severe than the punishment included in the original award.
(7) Where on a review under this section it appears to the reviewing authority that an order to pay compensation made under section 75(3) or (4) was invalid, or unduly excessive, the reviewing authority may quash the order or vary the amount of compensation payable under the order.
(8) The reviewing authority may at any time suspend the execution of any sentence passed by a disciplinary officer for such period as it thinks fit.
82. In this Part —
“junior disciplinary officer”, in relation to a person charged with an offence, means an officer commanding a company or equivalent sub-unit or any other officer designated as a junior disciplinary officer by the Commissioner to deal with charges made against a member for the commission of a service offence; and
“senior disciplinary officer”, in relation to a person charged with an offence, means an officer commanding a division or any other officer designated as a senior disciplinary officer by the Commissioner to deal with charges made against a member for the commission of a service offence.
83. A disciplinary officer shall not be bound by the law of evidence and shall act in such manner as seems to him most expedient for the disposal of the charge.
—(1) A disciplinary officer, if he is empowered under this Act to impose detention as a punishment, may direct that in default of the payment of any fine imposed by him on any offender, the offender shall, subject to subsection (2), undergo detention for such period as the disciplinary officer may determine.
(2) The period of detention which a disciplinary officer may direct under subsection (1) shall be as follows:
if the fine does not exceed $100, detention for a period not exceeding 10 days;
if the fine exceeds $100 but does not exceed $200, detention for a period not exceeding 20 days; and
in any other case, detention for a period not exceeding 40 days,
and such detention shall take effect from such date as the disciplinary officer may direct and shall terminate whenever the fine is paid.
—(1) Subject to this section, the Minister may make rules (referred to in this Act as the Rules of Procedure) with respect to the investigation and trial of, and awarding of punishment for, offences which may be dealt with by a disciplinary officer.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), the Rules of Procedure may make provision with respect to all or any of the following matters:
the procedure to be observed in the bringing of charges before a disciplinary officer;
the manner in which charges so brought are to be investigated, and the taking of evidence (whether orally or in writing, whether or not on oath and whether in full or in summary or abstract form) for the purpose of investigating or dealing with such charges;
the addition to, or substitution for, a charge which has been investigated of a new charge for an offence disclosed by evidence taken on the investigation and the treating of the investigation as the investigation of the new charge;
the procedure to be observed in proceedings before a disciplinary officer;
procuring the attendance of witnesses before such proceedings and at the taking of evidence in pursuance of rules made under paragraph (b);
empowering a disciplinary officer to amend a charge which is being tried by him;
the forms of orders and other documents to be made or used for the purposes of any provision of this Act or the Rules of Procedure relating to the investigation or trial of, or award of punishment for, service offences;
any matter which by this Part is required or authorised to be prescribed.
(3) Any provision of the Rules of Procedure which is inconsistent with the provisions of this Act shall to the extent of the inconsistency be void.