Written Answer by Minister for Law K Shanmugam to PQ on Victim Impact Statements Tendered in Court
08 May 2023 Posted in Parliamentary speeches and responses
Ms Sylvia Lim (Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC)
To ask the Minister for Law in the last two years (a) what is the number and percentage of criminal cases prosecuted where victim impact statements (VIS) have been tendered in court; and (b) what are the categories of offences for which VIS have been so used.
- The use of victim impact statements (VIS) in criminal cases is not specifically tracked and involves manual reviewing of the data. Based on the data reviewed, from 2021 to 2022, a VIS was tendered in (a) 13 State Court cases involving one or more sexual offences; and (b) 14 High Court cases involving one or more sexual offences.
- VIS have generally been used in sexual assault cases as well as severe cases of violence, especially those involving the abuse of vulnerable victims such as children, or where serious hurt was caused.
- The submission of a VIS is not the only way in which evidence of the impact of the offence on the victim is put before the Court. As previously stated in a 2021 reply, the impact of the offence on the victim would typically be evident from the evidence put before the Court, including the account of the victim and other witnesses, as well as medical and psychological reports1.
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1. Please refer to “Victim Impact Statement Adduced by Prosecution to Address Sentencing Court in Sexual Offences Cases in Past Five Years and Plans to Review Criminal Sentencing for Sexual Offences”, Official Report, 4 January 2021, Vol 95, Written Answers to Questions section.↩
Last updated on 08 May 2023