Lawyer M Ravi to face contempt of court proceedings for interrupting judges, alleging bias
SINGAPORE: Lawyer Ravi Madasamy, better known as M Ravi, will face contempt of court proceedings after applications for committal orders were made by Attorney-General Lucien Wong, the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) said on Tuesday (Feb 22).
The applications are related to Mr Ravi's conduct during two separate court proceedings before the High Court and State Courts in November 2021, said AGC.
At that time, Mr Ravi was representing Mr Chua Qwong Meng and 12 other bus drivers who are accusing SBS Transit of unfair work practices in a civil trial before the High Court.
Mr Chua later discharged Mr Ravi from the lawsuit after the first day of trial on Nov 22, 2021. Mr Chua said the plaintiffs felt embarrassed by the lawyer's behaviour during the trial.
The case at the State Courts was a criminal prosecution of Magendran Muniandy for forgery including of immigration documents. Mr Ravi was also subsequently discharged from the case.
The Attorney-General's position is that Mr Ravi "acted in a manner that was contemptuous of the respective courts" in the two cases, said AGC.
This included "making unfounded allegations of bias against the judges" and "persistently interrupting the judges in the course of the proceedings", said AGC.
It also said Mr Ravi took legal positions in Mr Chua's lawsuit without obtaining or confirming his client’s instructions, and misrepresented his availability to conduct the proceedings in Magendran's case.
Separately, AGC said it filed two disciplinary complaints against Mr Ravi and his supervising solicitor Mr Cheng Kim Kuan.
The complaints, which are pending before the Law Society, are for alleged misconduct by Mr Ravi in his conduct of legal cases, and breaches by both lawyers of the conditions imposed on Mr Ravi's practising certificate for 2021/2022.
CONTEMPT OF COURT
The High Court and State Courts made separate complaints to the Attorney-General in December last year over Mr Ravi's conduct, in line with the Administration of Justice (Protection) Act 2016, said AGC.
After "careful consideration", AGC applied for permission to apply for committal orders against Mr Ravi for contempt of court on Jan 7.
The High Court granted permission in February, and the applications for committal orders against Mr Ravi were filed on Feb 18. Hearing dates have not been scheduled.
Committal orders will set out the court's finding of whether contempt of court has been committed and the punishment to be imposed. The penalty is imprisonment, a fine or both.
AGC said contempt of court impedes the proper administration of justice in Singapore, and that it will take firm action against those who engage in such conduct.
"Left unchecked, such conduct can obstruct the determination of the truth and erode respect for our judicial institutions. This would harm the public interest in the proper administration of justice," it said.
In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Mr Ravi said he was not surprised by the applications, and that he would address the court on the reasons for his conduct.