Vigilante Corps Act

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Vigilante Corps Act
(CHAPTER 343)

(Original Enactment: Act 24 of 1967)

REVISED EDITION 2014
(31st December 2014)
An Act to provide for the establishment and maintenance of the Vigilante Corps and for purposes connected therewith.
[22nd September 1967]
Short title
1.  This Act may be cited as the Vigilante Corps Act.
Interpretation
2.  In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires —
“Commandant” means the officer appointed by the Minister under section 6;
“commanding officer” means the Deputy Commissioner of Police, the Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police and an Assistant Commissioner of Police, the Director of the Police Academy and any police officer lawfully acting in any of these appointments;
“Commissioner” means the Commissioner of Police;
“Corps” means the Vigilante Corps established under this Act;
“detention barracks” means any building or part of a building set apart by the Commissioner for the purposes of persons serving sentences of detention;
“disciplinary officer” means any officer or any police officer of or above the rank of Inspector in the Police Force who is appointed by the Commandant to conduct disciplinary proceedings;
“member of the Corps” or “member” means any person of any rank in the Corps;
“national serviceman” means a person who has been directed to present himself for enlistment in the Corps under the provisions of any written law for the time being in force relating to national service or enlistment;
“officer” means any member of the Corps not below the rank of assistant unit leader;
“Police Force” means the Singapore Police Force established by the Police Force Act (Cap. 235);
“subordinate officer” means a member of the Corps below the rank of assistant unit leader.
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Raising and maintenance of Vigilante Corps
3.  There shall be raised and maintained in accordance with the provisions of this Act and its regulations a corps to be known as the Vigilante Corps.
Composition of Corps
4.  The Corps shall consist of —
(a)
national servicemen; and
(b)
volunteers who have been enrolled in the Corps by the Commandant.
Functions of Corps
5.  The Corps shall —
(a)
assist the Police Force in the maintenance of law and order, the preservation of public peace, the prevention and detection of crime and the apprehension of offenders; and
(b)
perform such other functions and duties as may be assigned to the Corps by the Minister.
Appointment of Commandant
6.  The Minister may appoint a Commandant of the Corps who shall, subject to the general direction and control of the Commissioner, be responsible for the command, administration, discipline, training and welfare of the Corps.
Affiliation to Police Force
7.
—(1)  The Corps shall be affiliated to the Police Force but members of the Corps shall not be police officers within the meaning of the Police Force Act (Cap. 235).
(2)  The Commissioner may second any member of the Police Force for full-time or part-time service in the Corps.
Corps to consist of units
8.  The Corps shall consist of such units and divisions as may from time to time be approved by the Minister.
Power to disband Corps
9.  The Minister may, whenever it seems to him expedient to do so, disband or discontinue the service of the Corps or any part of the Corps.
Oath or affirmation
10.
—(1)  Every member of the Corps shall take an oath or affirmation in such form as the Minister may prescribe before the Commandant or such person as may be authorised by him.
(2)  Any member of the Corps who refuses to take such oath or affirmation shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $1,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both.
(3)  This section shall not apply to members of the Corps who are national servicemen.
Certificate
11.
—(1)  A certificate shall be issued to every member of the Corps and shall be evidence of his appointment under this Act.
(2)  No certificate shall be issued to any member of the Corps who is a national serviceman.
Resignation and discharge from Corps
12.
—(1)  Any member of the Corps, who is enrolled as a volunteer, may resign by giving to the Commandant 14 days’ notice in writing of his intention to do so.
(2)  The Commandant may discharge any member of the Corps where he is of the opinion that the member is not likely to become or remain useful in the Corps.
Delivery of Government property on leaving Corps
13.
—(1)  Every member of the Corps who, by resignation, dismissal, discharge or otherwise leaves the Corps, shall before leaving deliver up in good order (fair wear and tear only excepted) any arms, ammunition, accoutrement, uniform or other article supplied to him and any other property belonging to the Government which may be in his possession.
(2)  Any person neglecting to deliver up any such article or property shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $500 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months, and shall, in addition be liable to pay the value of the article or property not delivered up.
(3)  For the purposes of subsection (2), the value of the article or property shall be ascertained in a summary manner by the same court by which the person was convicted, where it shall be recoverable as a fine.
Desertion
14.
—(1)  If any member of the Corps unlawfully absents himself from duty under circumstances which show that he has the intention of not returning to his duty, he shall be deemed to have deserted and shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months.
(2)  Any police officer may arrest without warrant any person where there are reasonable grounds to believe that that person is guilty of an offence under subsection (1).
Members to obey lawful orders
15.  Every member of the Corps shall obey all lawful orders, whether given verbally or in writing by his superior officer and shall obey and conform to any written order issued from time to time by the Commissioner, a commanding officer or the Commandant.
Punishment of subordinate officers
16.
—(1)  Where a subordinate officer is found guilty by a disciplinary officer of any of the offences specified in the Schedule, the disciplinary officer may impose any one of the following punishments:
(a)
detention for a period not exceeding 40 days;
(b)
a fine not exceeding $200;
(c)
stoppage of leave for any period not exceeding 28 days;
(d)
restriction of privileges for any period not exceeding 14 days;
(e)
extra duty or drill for any period not exceeding 7 days;
(f)
reprimand;
(g)
caution.
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(2)  If a disciplinary officer is of the opinion that a subordinate officer found guilty of any offence under this section should be reduced in rank, he may refer the charge and the record of the proceedings to the Commandant who may reduce the rank of the subordinate officer or impose any one of the punishments which a disciplinary officer may impose under subsection (1).
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(3)  A subordinate officer may appeal against any decision under this section to a commanding officer within 14 days from the date of the decision and in every case where an appeal has been lodged, any punishment imposed shall be suspended pending the determination of the appeal.
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(4)  In addition to any of the punishments under subsection (1), a disciplinary officer may order a subordinate officer found guilty of any offence under this Act to pay compensation not exceeding $50 to any person who suffered damage or loss through the offence.
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Punishment of officers
17.
—(1)  Where an officer is found guilty of any of the offences specified in the Schedule by any person authorised by regulations made under this Act to conduct disciplinary proceedings, a commanding officer may reduce the rank of the officer or impose any one of the punishments which a disciplinary officer may impose under section 16(1).
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(2)  An officer may appeal against any decision under this section to the Commissioner within 14 days from the date of the decision and in every case where an appeal has been lodged, any punishment imposed shall be suspended pending the determination of the appeal.
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(3)  In addition to any of the punishments under subsection (1), a commanding officer may order an officer found guilty of any offence under this Act to pay compensation not exceeding $100 to any person who suffered damage or loss through the offence.
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Decision on appeal
18.  On appeal under section 16 or 17, a commanding officer or the Commissioner, as the case may be, may —
(a)
dismiss the appeal;
(b)
allow the appeal and quash the decision; or
(c)
impose such other punishment as he thinks fit except that the punishment so imposed shall not in any event be greater or more severe than that originally imposed.
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Commencement of sentence of detention
19.  A term of detention imposed under section 16 or 17 shall take effect from the date on which it was passed unless the officer passing the sentence otherwise directs.
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Sentence of detention
20.  A person sentenced to detention under this Act shall, unless otherwise provided for in any regulations made under the Act, serve his sentence in detention barracks.
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Provisions as to persons unlawfully at large
21.
—(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 without warrant and taken to any place in which he may be required to be detained in accordance with this Act or any of its regulations.
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(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 he is taken into custody or he is received into a detention barrack.
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Recovery of compensation
22.  An order for payment of compensation made under section 16 or 17 shall not prejudice any right to any civil remedy for the recovery of damages beyond the amount of compensation paid under the order.
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Approval of proper authority for discharge of member called up for national service
23.  No member of the Corps who has been called up for national service in the Corps shall be discharged under section 12 except with the prior approval of the proper authority appointed under any written law relating to national service or enlistment.
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Prosecution for disciplinary offences
24.
—(1)  Any member of the Corps accused of any of the offences specified in the Schedule may, instead of being dealt with under section 16 or 17, be prosecuted in any court and shall liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $500 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months or to both.
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(2)  Where a member of the Corps is convicted under subsection (1), the court may order him to pay to any person who suffered damage or loss through the offence compensation not exceeding $1,000.
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(3)  Nothing in subsection (2) shall prejudice the right of any person to a civil remedy for the recovery of damages beyond the amount of compensation ordered.
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(4)  No prosecution under this section shall be instituted without the previous sanction in writing of a commanding officer.
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Threatening or insulting police officer or Vigilante Corps member of senior or equal rank
25.
—(1)  Any member of the Corps who threatens or insults any police officer or member of senior or equal rank when that police officer or member is on duty, or when such threat or insult relates to or is consequent on the discharge of duty by the police officer or member so threatened or insulted, shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $1,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both.
(2)  Any police officer may arrest without warrant any member of the Corps who has committed or is accused of having committed an offence under subsection (1).
Loss of or damage to arms, equipment, etc., to be made good by order of court or by composition
26.
—(1)  Any member of the Corps who pawns, sells, loses by neglect, makes away with or wilfully or negligently damages any arms, ammunition, accoutrement, uniform or other article supplied to him, or any vehicle or property committed to his charge shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $500 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months, and shall, in addition be liable to pay the value of that article or property.
(1A)  For the purposes of subsection (1), the value of that article or property shall be ascertained in a summary manner by the same court by which the person was convicted, where it shall be recoverable as a fine.
(2)  The Commandant may in minor cases compound such offences.
Power to summon witnesses
27.
—(1)  Subject to subsection (2), the person conducting the disciplinary proceedings into any offence under section 16 or 17 may by notice require any person to attend and give evidence before him and may require that person to produce any documents relating to that offence.
(2)  No person required to attend under subsection (1) shall be obliged to disclose any matter or produce any document which would have been protected from disclosure or production, as the case may be, on the ground of privilege if the proceedings had been held in any court.
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(3)  Any person required to attend under subsection (1) who without reasonable excuse fails to do so shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $100 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one month or to both.
Authorised deductions only to be made from pay
28.  The pay of a member of the Corps shall be paid without any deduction other than the deductions authorised by this Act or any of its regulations or by any other written law.
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Deductions from ordinary pay of member of Corps
29.
—(1)  Subject to subsection (2), the following deductions may, or if regulations so provide shall, be made from the ordinary pay due to a member of the Corps:
(a)
all ordinary pay —
(i)
for every day of absence on desertion or without leave, or for overstaying the period for which leave of absence is granted;
(ii)
for every day of imprisonment, corrective training, preventive detention, reformative training or detention of any other description, to which he is liable in consequence of an order or sentence of a court or order of the civil power;
(iii)
for every day of detention imposed under section 16 or 17; and
(iv)
for every day on which he is in hospital on account of sickness certified by the proper medical officer attending on him at the hospital to have been caused by an offence under this Act committed by him;
(b)
the sum required to make good such compensation for any expenses, loss, damage or destruction occasioned by the commission of any offence as may be awarded by a court by whom he is convicted of the offence or by a person conducting the disciplinary proceedings against him under this Act or any of its regulations;
(c)
the sum required to make good such compensation for any expenses caused by him, or for any loss of or damage or destruction done by him to any arms, equipment, clothing, instruments or to any buildings or property, as may be awarded by a court or by a person conducting the disciplinary proceedings against him under this Act or any of its regulations; and
(d)
the sum required to pay a fine imposed under section 16 or 17 or any fine, penalty, damages, compensation or costs which a court before which he has been charged with an offence has ordered him to pay.
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(2)  The total amount of deduction from the ordinary pay due to a member of the Corps in respect of the sums required to pay any compensation, fine or sum awarded or ordered to be paid under subsection (1) shall not exceed such sums as will leave to him less than $1 a day; and a member shall not be subjected to any deductions greater than is sufficient to make good the expenses, loss, damage or destruction for which the compensation is awarded, or to pay the sum awarded or ordered.
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Supplemental provisions as to deductions from ordinary pay
30.
—(1)  Any sum authorised by this Act to be deducted from the ordinary pay of a member of the Corps may, without prejudice to any other mode of recovering the same, be deducted from the ordinary pay or from any sums due to the member, in such manner, and when deducted or recovered may be appropriated in such manner, as may from time to time be directed by any regulations made under this Act.
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(2)  Any regulations referred to in subsection (1) may from time to time declare what shall, for the purposes of this Act relating to deductions from pay, be deemed to constitute a day of absence or a day of imprisonment or detention, except that —
(a)
no person shall be treated as absent, imprisoned or detained for the purposes of this Act unless the absence, imprisonment or detention has lasted 6 hours or more, or the absence prevented the absentee from fulfilling any duty;
(b)
a period of absence, imprisonment or detention which commences before and ends after midnight may be reckoned as a day;
(c)
the number of days shall be reckoned as from the time when the absence, imprisonment or detention commences; and
(d)
no period of less than 24 hours shall be reckoned as more than one day.
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Regulations
31.
—(1)  The Minister may make regulations with respect to the constitution, general administration, discipline, training and welfare of the Corps and generally for carrying out the purposes of this Act.
(2)  In particular and without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), such regulations may provide for —
(a)
the manner in which, and conditions subject to which, persons are to be enrolled in the Corps, and the form of declaration to be taken by such persons;
(b)
the conditions of physical fitness required of members of the Corps;
(c)
the training to be undergone by members of the Corps;
(d)
the attendance at courses of instruction and training by members of the Corps;
(e)
the seniority of officers and the entry, confirmation, appointment and promotion of members of the Corps;
(f)
uniforms and equipment to be used in the Corps;
(g)
awards of compensation in respect of death and personal injuries;
(h)
awards of pensions and gratuities;
(i)
reimbursements or payments to members of the Corps;
(j)
the duties and responsibilities of a member who has been called up for service in the Corps under the provisions of any written law relating to national service or enlistment;
(k)
discipline and punishments; and
(l)
any other matter necessary or expedient for carrying out the purposes of this Act.
Continuance of existing Vigilante Corps and persons deemed to be members of Corps
32.
—(1)  The Vigilante Corps existing immediately before 22 September 1967 shall, as from and after that date, be deemed to have been raised and maintained under this Act.
(2)  With effect from 22 September 1967, every person who immediately before that date was a member of the Vigilante Corps shall be deemed to be appointed or enrolled, with the same rank or seniority, under the provisions of this Act, and the provisions of this Act shall extend to every such person accordingly.
THE SCHEDULE
Sections 16(1), 17(1) and 24(1).
Offences
1.  Abandons any place or thing which it is his duty to guard or to prevent from falling into the hands of any unauthorised person.
2.  Behaves in such a manner as to show cowardice or induces any other member so to behave when that member is on duty.
3.  While on guard duty, sleeps or leaves any place where it is his duty to be.
4.  While on patrol duty, does not carry out his duty diligently.
5.  Fails to use his utmost exertion to carry any lawful order of a superior officer into execution.
6.  By words or behaviour, wilfully disobeys any lawful order by whatever means communicated to him.
7.  Fails to comply with any lawful order or neglects to perform or negligently performs any lawful duty or order.
8.  Strikes or otherwise uses violence to or offers violence to a member superior in rank.
9.  Uses threatening or insubordinate language, or gestures or behaves with contempt to a member superior in rank.
10.  Absents without leave or good cause from service or from the place where he is lawfully required for the time being to be.
11.  Does or fails to do any act, or conducts himself to the prejudice of good order or discipline in the Corps.
12.  Unlawfully places or holds a member in custody.
13.  Ill-treats a member of lower rank or less seniority or any member in custody or subject to his authority.
14.  Knowingly exceeds his authority over a member of lower rank or less seniority.
15.  Falsely claims to be suffering from any sickness.
16.  Injures himself or any other member with intent thereby to render himself or that other member unfit for service, or causes himself to be injured by any person with that intent.
17.  Does any act or fails to do anything to produce, prolong or aggravate any sickness with intent to render or keep himself unfit for duty or service.
18.  While on duty, is intoxicated by alcohol.
19.  Has in his possession, smokes or administers to himself or otherwise consumes any dangerous, prohibited or controlled drug as defined in any written law relating to the misuse or control of drugs.
20.  Without authority, abandons any arms, vessel or vehicle of the Corps or the Police Force.
21.  Does an act in relation to anything or substance that may be dangerous to life or property, which act causes, or is likely to cause, loss of life or bodily injury to any member or cause, or is likely to cause, damage to or destruction of any property.
22.  Wilfully damages or destroys or causes the loss of, or is concerned in the wilful damage, destruction or loss of, any property belonging to the Government or to a member.
23.  By wilful neglect causes or allows damage to, or the loss of, any property belonging to the Government.
24.  By any negligent act or omission, causes or allows damage to, or the loss of, any property belonging to the Government.
25.  Does any wilful or negligent act or omission which is likely to cause damage to, or the loss of, any property belonging to the Government.
26.  Misapplies or wastefully expends any property of the Government.
27.  Being a full-time member, engages in any trade or employment without the permission of the Commissioner.
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LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

Vigilante Corps Act
(CHAPTER 343)
This Legislative History is provided for the convenience of users of the Vigilante Corps Act. It is not part of the Act.
1.  
Act 24 of 1967—Vigilante Corps Act 1967
Date of First Reading
:
29 June 1967
Date of Second and Third Readings
:
8 September 1967
Date of commencement
:
22 September 1967
2.  
1970 Revised Edition—Vigilante Corps Act (Chapter 80)
Date of operation
:
1 April 1971
3.  
Act 25 of 1970—Enlistment Act 1970
(Amendment made to Act by)
Date of First Reading
:
7 May 1970
(Bill No. 17/70)
Date of Second and Third Readings
:
21 May 1970
Date of commencement
:
1 August 1970
4.  
Act 21 of 1974—Enlistment (Amendment) Act 1974
(Consequential amendments made to Act by)
Date of First Reading
:
23 October 1974
(Bill No. 27/74)
Date of Second and Third Readings
:
6 November 1974
Date of commencement
:
1 March 1975
5.  
Act 24 of 1982—Vigilante Corps (Amendment) Act 1982
Date of First Reading
:
27 July 1982
(Bill No. 14/82)
Date of Second and Third Readings
:
31 August 1982
Date of commencement
:
1 October 1982
6.  
1985 Revised Edition—Vigilante Corps Act (Chapter 343)
Date of operation
:
30 March 1987
7.  
Date of operation
:
31 December 2014

COMPARATIVE TABLE

Vigilante Corps Act
(CHAPTER 343)

The following provisions in the 1985 Revised Edition of the Vigilante Corps Act have been renumbered by the Law Revision Commissioners in this 2014 Revised Edition.

This Comparative Table is provided for the convenience of users. It is not part of the Vigilante Corps Act.

2014 Ed.
1985 Ed.
13—(2) and (3)
13—(2)
26—(1) and (1A)
26—(1)
27—(1) and (2)
27—(1)
       (3)
       (2)