One of 11 exam cheats withdraws application to be called to the Bar
One of the 11 aspiring lawyers who cheated in the 2020 Bar examination was on Wednesday (May 11) allowed to withdraw his application to be called to the Bar after he agreed to two conditions set by the court.
In a hearing before Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon, Mr Leon Tay Quan Li gave an undertaking not to bring a fresh application for admission to the Bar in Singapore or in any other jurisdiction for at least five years.
Mr Tay, 26, also gave his word that, if and when he brings a fresh application, he would have to satisfy any requirements by the Attorney-General, Law Society, Singapore Institute of Legal Education or the court as to his fitness for admission.
The Chief Justice said Mr Tay had shown a grave deficit of integrity in cheating during the exam and in the way he conducted himself when confronted in the aftermath.
Mr Tay had given a false account of what had transpired; he had also not given full disclosure of what happened when he filed his application to be admitted to the Bar.
But the fact that Mr Tay is not fit and proper to be admitted to the Bar does not mean that he will never be so, said Chief Justice Menon.
"I'm inviting him to see this as a first step in a journey towards rehabilitation," said the Chief Justice.
Mr Tay was one of 11 aspiring lawyers caught cheating in the Bar exam known as Part B in 2020, which was held online.
He was found to have colluded with another candidate, Ms Lynn Kuek Yi Ting.
Ms Kuek was one of the six trainee lawyers whose applications for admission to the Bar were heard last month.
On April 18, it was revealed that Ms Kuek's application was adjourned for a year, while the applications of the other five were adjourned for six months.
On April 20, Mr Tay wrote to the Attorney-General's Chambers, indicating his intention to withdraw his admission application.
On Wednesday, Mr Tay, who was represented in court by Ms Luo Ling Ling, released a letter to the media apologising for his "inexcusable misconduct".
He apologised to all the members of the legal fraternity and fellow candidates who took the Bar exam that year as well as to all members of the public, saying he was deeply remorseful for his mistakes and that he had disappointed his parents.
Mr Tay said: "I know that I am presently not fit and proper to be admitted to the Bar. As such, I applied to withdraw my application, with conditions to be set by the court as it deems appropriate for my case.
"I will reflect on my actions and perform more volunteering and pro bono work to give back to the community as a whole in the near future."