Why StanChart robbery suspect is spared the cane

Mr Sean Lim Wei Xin questioned why the Standard Chartered Bank robbery suspect, once extradited from Britain, will be treated differently, that is, spared from caning (Disappointed by decision on StanChart robbery suspect; Feb 22).

The United Kingdom, along with 161 other countries, is party to the United Nations Convention Against Torture.

The convention forbids extradition to countries where caning is practised, as judicial caning is viewed as a form of torture (inflicting severe physical or mental pain or suffering on a person, as defined in Article 1 of the convention).

The UK had to insist on the exemption as warranted by international law.

This has nothing to do with Singapore being a small state, being pressured by a former colonial power.

All other 161 parties to the convention, among which are many countries smaller than Singapore, would have acted likewise.

Gil Simon Schneider (Dr)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 23, 2018, with the headline 'Why StanChart robbery suspect is spared the cane'. Print Edition | Subscribe