24 Feb 2021 Posted in Parliamentary speeches and responses
Mr Leon Perera (Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC)
To ask the Minister for Law for each year over the past five years, how many accused persons (i) have applied for legal representation under the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme (CLAS) and (ii) have been provided legal representation through CLAS.
- The Criminal Legal Aid Scheme (“CLAS”) provides legal aid to persons who have been charged with non-capital offences, and who do not have the means to afford their own lawyers. It is administered by the Law Society Pro Bono Services (“LSPBS”). The Government has been co-funding CLAS since 2015 when CLAS was enhanced (“Enhanced CLAS”) to serve more accused persons who merit legal assistance but cannot afford it.
- Since the start of the enhanced CLAS in 2015, CLAS has received an average of 2,400 applications annually. All applicants receive some basic legal advice in the course of their applications being assessed. More than half, or 1,400 applicants per year on average, went on to be supported under CLAS and received full legal representation. This is more than three times the number of applicants who benefitted from full legal representation, compared to pre-2015. The details from 2014 to 2019 are provided in Table 1 below.
Last updated on 24 Feb 2021