I say No Case To Answer for WB/IMF Speakers Cornered PS1512 & others
My court document PDF file online
However, the AGC had once and again amended their charges.
In 2008 we were charged initially for holding procession from Speakers Cornered to Parliament, without permit that I/O at that time was DSP William Goh - the same guy then ASP who investigated our CPFB 4 person protest; the same guy who arrested the TBT-18 plus me on 15.March.2008, then he got transferred to another post in 2008, and a new investigator took over the case after the case was already hearing in court.
When the case just began the AGC amended their charges against all 5, from holding procession to ATTEMPT to hold procession, from Speakers Cornered to Parliament. Obviously they could not prove that case, as most persons including myself did not reached Parliament on that day. :-)
Then at the very end of prosecution's case just before yesterday after more than a year of hearing, they had once again amended the charge! This time they realized that they prosecuted the WRONG CHARGE again after doing it for over a year, that the actual boundary of Speakers Cornered does not include those park benches from which Dr CSJ etc were speaking atop of! The amendment became that Attempted Procession from NEAR Speakers Corner instead of Speakers Corner itself! :-)
While this is most unfair because all the cross examinations and defense arguments were made for more than a year to defend a different charge, this should be a Miscarriage of Justice and I thus have the rights to apply or appeal for a re-trial!
Legally speaking, I have ala-by that I wasn't inside the legal boundary of Speakers Corner as stated in the charge, this can be deem very slight difference but for legal boundaries a tiny difference from within to outside of boundaries can be very significant, e.g. smoking within or outside the Yellow Lines defining a Smoking Zone. We are talking about several meters from the actual legal boundary on that day.
Any way this is my text:
No Case To Answer
For the charge of attempting to participate a procession on 16.Sept.2006 from Speakers' Corner to Parliament consisting of 7 persons listed on the charge, and ought reasonably to know that it was lacking a permit, it is the prosecution's onus to prove beyond reasonable doubt that:
there were 5 or more than 5 persons all sharing the common intention to do the procession
that the way they that they had intended to proceed to parliament in a way that constitute to a procession and not just a casual walk
that they are all aware that there wasn't a legal permit
It is the submission of Yap Keng Ho the 5th defendant that:
The prosecution had in their case failed to prove point #1 to #3 listed above:
A) It is in the evidence that only Dr Chee had during his speech made on 16.Sept.2006 announced his plan to:
proceed to Parliament and hold a rally from Speakers' Corner
proceed to Suntec City and hold a rally from Parliament
proceed to Istana and hold a rally from Suntec City
B) He had invited people to take part, but he had not indicated weather he hold any permit or not.
C) He had not revealed any details nor schedule of plan how he had intended to do so:
either by foot or by vehicle
singly or double or in groups smaller than 5 or more than 5
when he plan to reach each of these locations
what sort of rallies and contents of speeches
who will be speaking in these rallies
D) Dr Chee had not indicated how he was going to know who had accepted his invitation, neither there were any of follow ways that people could indicate that they wish to take part:
enrollment or registration
wear a certain attire such as T-shirt with wordings
hold flag or banner or placard
raise their hands to indicate their interest
voice up to answer to his call
stand behind Dr. Chee or queue up somewhere
E) Police had not announced that they were stopping or preventing any procession, but only had instead told a legally assembled Speakers Corner Audience that they were An Unlawful Assembly without any reasons nor explanations.
F) Police did ordered some sort of dispersal for all persons not wanting to take part in unlawful assembly to leave Hong Lim Park, but then they did a self-contradicting actions by force preventing people from leaving Hong Lim Park subsequently and almost immediately.
G) The police did so without verifying the intentions of individual at the scene, except for just only NOT MORE THAN 3 PRESONS. They had however blindly assumed that all the rest of people were sharing intention of executing plan mentioned in Dr. Chee's speech.
H) Police did not issue any order of reasonable crowd management, that if the members of public want to leave Speakers Corner lawfully via which exits or how they may do so, without being treated as attempting to proceed to Parliament to attend Dr. Chee's proposed rally.
Police did not inform members of public that there were no permit for any procession nor rallies at locations proposed by Dr. Chee.
J) In Tan Teck Wee's speech nothing about procession nor rallies had been mentioned.
K) In Mr. Gandhi's speech nothing about rallies had been mentioned.
Miss Chee Siok Chin & Mr. Teoh & Mr. George did not gave any speech.
Police did not speak to myself, nor Mr. Tan Teck Wee, nor Mr. Teoh nor Mr. George
N) I had only brought the unreasonable enforcement acts of police to the attention of members of medias & public. I had not talked nor indicated anything regarding procession nor rallies.
O) Even if indeed Dr. Chee & Miss Chee & Mr. Gandhi had in the evidence indicated intention to proceed to parliament from Speakers Corner, there are only 3 of them, still less than 5. Furthermore, there is no evidence on exactly how they had wanted to proceed to Parliament, either by taxi or foot or singly or together with how many other persons.
P) There is no evidence raised by the prosecution regarding how the other accused persons had reasonably received information regarding the status of permit application or was there any application, except that the applicant Dr. Chee be the only person who must know.
The prosecution had not proved at all, what would the objective of each accused persons be, even if they might be attempting to leave Speakers Corner. They therefore could be attempting to leave in compliance of the police's dispersal order, or had their own other destinations other than Parliament when attempting to leave Speakers Corner.
For 5th defendant who did not arrived together with Dr. Chee's group and did not wear the same protest T-shirt as that group, and had separately applied for Procession & Assembly Permit apart from Dr. Chee's application, and had separately registered to be a legitimate speaker at police post, even if the 5th defendant had intended to follow the crowd to the Parliament, he have the rights to do so legitimately as an independent observer just like the press, as long as his movement and gestures is legally and apparently apart from Dr. Chee's proposed action. All the dozens of members of press & media also have this same rights to be observers independent from Dr. Chee's proposed actions. The court should not deem each and every persons to be a part of Dr. Chee's proposed action unless these persons share the same objective and consent with Dr. Chee's proposed action. The prosecution had entirely failed to prove the stands of 5th defendant that if he had attempted to proceed to parliament, that he was bearing an unlawful intention to participate in any procession without a permit.
Submission on case law:
I like to cite PS1348/2008 pp vs Yap Keng Ho & others before DJ John Ng at Court 15 in which all 5 accused persons were acquitted based on DJ Ng's decision that action of a casual walk is apart from that of a procession as defined by the meaning of that English word. Defendants were acquitted because a casual walk conveying themselves from Speakers's Corner Parliament to Istana does not require a permit as a procession would.
This is applicable in our case PS1512/2008 and others, that there is no evidence how the proposed or intended movements will be conducted, it could be either a lawful casual walk with requires no permit or an unlawful procession. In our case the venues of Speakers Corner & Parliament and Istana are ALL the same as in case PS1348/2008.
It is the onus of prosecution to prove that the intended or proposed conveying of persons to the Parliament was not to be in the form of a lawful casual walk which requires no police permit. But in the proceeding during prosecution's case this is not at all proven, there is no evidence raised regarding how Dr. Chee had wanted to convey himself to Parliament.
It was also the onus of enforcement officers at the scene to verify and questions the accused persons weather which the police had failed:
where were their destinations
how would they convey themselves
were they sharing the purpose and objectives with Dr. Chee
were they a member of press or media or just independent observers
My later email to DPP & Judge this afternoon:
Dear DJ Toh,
As the no case submission is from the defense, I think it should be only fair that defense gets the rights to do a final reply?
In essence, my position for the no case argument is that, motives and intention unless proven by prosecution by evidence can not be presumed nor imaginary. There are many elements lacking in the case.
The motive originating from only Dr. Chee is not proven that others had prior knowledge of Dr. Chee's plan in details, not just on weather he had any permits, but weather how he had intended the proposed movements to be carried out.
Even more remote are the motives of the other accused persons, including myself. There is not a single bit of evidence regarding my motive nor consent to participate in anything.
Even if myself or any other defendants were proven to be attempting to leave Speakers' Corner it could be only in compliance with the Police Order to disperse from that area. This again is the onus of prosecution to prove and can not be grossly assumed. There is no evidence on this.
Even if myself or any other defendants were intended to proceed to Parliament, it is again the onus on prosecution to prove that the intention were to be participating in anything illegal or as proposed by Dr. Chee. Any member of public have the lawful rights to proceed to parliament from Speakers Corner for objective of observation or reporting for journalism or for their own purposes unrelated to Dr. Chee's proposal or invitation. There is no evidence to prove this either.
In the very first place, what is in the evidence as Dr. Chee's plan reveal by none other than that speech, is very fuzzy and unconvincing. It is not at all logical for audience who were already lawfully assembled for a rally at Speakers Corner to follow the speaker to proceed to a number of places in order to hold a number of rallies. It is not reasonable nor logical that Dr. Chee can really expect any person to follow him, nor believe that was what he was really going to do.
There is no such kind of activity in common knowledge as a multi-staged-mobile-rallies. Dr. Chee had held so many rallies in his political life, and we had not seen such kind of complicated and almost meaningless exercise. Therefore on the ground of motive, I don't think what is mentioned in the prosecution's case can make logical sense that such a strange invitation would had convinced persons such as myself to participate in.
In the aboves I am just summarizing what I had said in court today, as well as had written in the PDF file attached.
I had at about 3PM today finally managed to locate Court Officer Jason and past him a printed copy of this PDF file for the court's record.
Thanks & regards