While illegal motorcar racing is not a typical occurrence in Singapore, an incident in 2015 at Seletar Link involving a Lamborghini Murcielago SV and a Nissan GT-R led to both sports cars being forfeited by the Singapore Police Force.
This forfeiture is the first of its kind in Singapore since actual confiscation of vehicles are rare because there is a strict definition of racing. For example, there must be a defined start and end point and if such factors are not met the vehicles involved should not be confiscated by the authorities.
Previous Cases of Illegal Racing in Singapore
There were only five cases of illegal racing from 2014 to September 2017. Nonetheless, there were other cases that were classified under “dangerous driving”, of which there were 232 cases in the same period.
The cars in this most recent incident are the Lamborghini costing around S$1.6 million and the Nissan GT-R S$600,000 when new – will soon be auctioned off, and the money will go to state coffers.
There have also been four other incidents of illegal racing in Singapore namely incidents involving two BMWs and two Volkswagens. The outcome of these incidents is still pending.
The BMWs were found racing in Lim Chu Kang Road in July, while the Volkswagens were caught racing on the same road last December.
The Commander of Traffic Police mentioned that they would be pressing for forfeitures of the vehicles so that this will act as a warning to errant motorists who willfully disregard the safety of other road users.
Laws in Singapore Regarding Illegal Racing
Besides vehicle forfeiture, those found guilty of illegal racing face a fine of up to $2,000 and six months behind bars, under S116 (7) of the Road Traffic Act. For dangerous driving, the penalty is a fine of up to $3,000 and jail of up to 12 months. Both groups of offenders also face demerit points and suspension of their driving licences.
What happened to the Drivers?
The driver of the GTR in the abovementioned case was sentenced to two weeks’ jail, fined S$2,500.00 and would be banned from driving for 18 months after admitting to taking part in the illegal race, dangerous driving by accelerating and travelling at very high speed and driving without insurance coverage. However, he could have been jailed for up to six months, fined up to $2,000 and banned from driving for at least 12 months for illegal racing.
It is important to note that the maximum penalty for dangerous driving, according to S64(1) of the Road Traffic Act is a S$5,000.00 fine and 12 months’ jail, and for the insurance charge, a $1,000 fine and three months’ jail plus 12 months’ disqualification.
Other Traffic Offences
Driving offences have considerably serious offences in Singapore. A single irresponsible moment can result in severe injuries and even worse, loss of lives.
While the cases mentioned above are “rarer” traffic offences in Singapore, some more examples of common offences include exceeding the speed limit and driving without due care or reasonable consideration. These offences are governed by the Road Traffic Act.
Exceeding speed limit
According to Section 63, whoever exceeds the speed limit by driving a motor vehicle at speeds higher than what is prescribed as the maximum speed in relation to a vehicle of that class or description shall be guilty of an offence. The offending person will be prosecuted in court.
Driving without due care or reasonable consideration
According to Section 65, whoever operates a motor vehicle on the road without the due care or attention or proper consideration for other road users shall be guilty of an offence. The offender will be liable for a fine of up to S$1,000 or an imprisonment for a term up to 6 months or both.
Driving under the influence of alcohol
According to Section 67, whoever, when driving, is under the influence of alcohol, or drug, or any intoxicating substances, to an extent where the driver has no control of his vehicle, or his alcohol intake is so much that his breath and blood exceeds the prescribed limit, shall be guilty of an offence. The Offender will be liable for a fine not less than S$1,000 and not more than S$5,000 or an imprisonment for a term up to 6 months.
How We Can Help
At B Rao & KS Rajah we understand that such crimes are committed at the spur of the moment. With our team of experienced criminal lawyers, you can be assured that you will receive the utmost care in your case and your matter. We believe that everyone deserves fair representation in such situations. We are a team of experienced lawyers who are passionate about justice and fairness. Our lawyers will be able to guide you at every stage of the proceedings. We firmly believe that everyone should be entitled to a second chance and be allowed the opportunity to turn over a new leaf and live life anew. Should you be in a position where you may need our assistance, please do not hesitate and contact us so that we can advise you on your matter. Our team of experienced lawyers is ready to ensure that you receive the fullest extent of assistance available to you.