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Complaint was unsolicited and voluntary

He was neither a confidential informant nor did he make any request for anonymity.

These were some of the details the Maritime and Port Authority Of Singapore (MPA) provided in its defence of the claims made by Mr Tan Keng Hong.

In its defence, which was filed in the State Courts on July 25, MPA's lawyers from Straits Law Practice LLC said neither the agency nor its prosecutor, Mr Ng Hak Mun, had acted in "bad faith" when it named Mr Tan in its court hearing on Jan 10, 2012.

MPA said the information from Mr Tan was not provided directly to the agency, but through a report made at Bukit Merah Neighbourhood Police Centre on Aug 3, 2011.

The police subsequently referred the matter to the MPA, which then investigated.

Since the complaint was unsolicited and voluntary, there could not have been any agreement of confidentiality, argued MPA.

The agency also submitted that any individual who made a complaint to the police or any regulatory body "would reasonably have known that they may be called as witnesses in court in the prosecution of any persons for offences pursuant to the relevant laws, statutes and regulations".

'OPEN JUSTICE'

Also, when requests are made by accused persons, the police "may be duty-bound" to furnish the first information reports to such accused persons "in the interest of open justice", the defence added.

When contacted, an MPA spokesman said the agency has a "strict policy" when it comes to protecting "the identity of any whistle-blower".

The MPA will not divulge the identity, except in documents that have to be tendered to the courts, she added.

The spokesman said: "Where credible information is provided to MPA, we will follow up to investigate and take appropriate action based on the evidence we have gathered."