The Singapore Police Force (Abbreviation: SPF; Pasukan Polis Singapura; 新加坡警察部队; சிங்கப்பூர் காவல் துறை) is the main government agency tasked with maintaining law and order in the island city-state. Formerly known as the Republic of Singapore Police (RSP; Polis Repablik Singapura), it has grown from an 11-man organisation to a 38,587 strong force. Singapore has been ranked consistently in the top five positions in the Global Competitiveness Report in terms of its reliability of police services.
The organisational structure of the SPF is split between the staff and line functions, roughly modeled after the military. There are currently 17 staff departments, 3 specialist staff departments and 16 specialist and line units, including 6 land divisions. The headquarters is located in a block at New Phoenix Park in Novena, adjacent to a twin block occupied by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
- 1 Colonial History
- 2 Modern Day
- 3 Organisational structure
- 4 Finances
- 5 Manpower
- 6 Uniforms
- 7 Ranks
- 8 Weapons
- 9 Equipment
- 10 Vehicles
- 11 Auxiliary Police Forces
- 12 Defunct assets
- 13 Popular media works related to SPF
- 14 See also
- 15 References
- 16 External links
Colonial History[edit | edit source]
The Singapore Police Force is almost as old as modern Singapore. The Force was formed in 1820, with a skeleton force of 11 men under the command of Francis James Bernard, son-in-law of William Farquhar. Farquhar informed Raffles that he had provisionally introduced licences for opium and alcohol sales that would raise $650 per month, with $300 of this sum being used to run a small police department. As the department took form, Bernard became in charge of a Malay writer, one jailor, one jemadar (sergeant) and eight peada (constables) by May 1820. Raffles approved these arrangements by August 1820, and cemented the formal establishment of a police force in Singapore. Manpower constraints meant that the men had to perform a wide range of roles, and required the help of headmen among the various ethnic communities to maintain orderliness on the streets, all the more possible as the communities lived in segregated areas around the city.
This partnership with the community was in line with Sir Stamford Raffles' vision of a thriving colony largely self-regulated by local social structures, with the British masters administrating it via indirect rule. The large influx of migrants from China, however, began to test this system when the hands-off approach by the British allowed secret societies in Singapore to thrive. Although originally formed with legal intentions of community bonding and the provision of assistance to fellow migrants, these societies gradually became influential, competitive, and increasingly engaged in illegal activity including monetary extortion from the masses, the operation of gambling dens, and the smuggling of illegal goods on top of more legal commercial operations to meet their financial needs.
Competition gradually heated up between large rival factions, such as that between the larger Ghee Hin Kongsi, the Ghee Hock Kongsi and the Hai San Kongsi. Murders, mass riots, kidnappings, arson and other serious crimes became commonplace in the next four decades since the colony's founding. Faced with violent acts of crime which may involve thousands, such as the funeral riots of 1846 involving 9,000 members from the Ghee Hin and Ghee Hock secret societies, the police force was woefully incapable of bringing the situation under control, and often had to call in the army for assistance. The escalating number of serious crimes prompted the need for stronger legislation to deter would-be criminals. Singapore's first executions were thus held in the wake of the first criminal session in June 1828, when a Chinese and Indian were found guilty and convicted for murder.
Headed by Europeans and predominantly staffed by Malay and Indian officers, the force had little Chinese representation as the military and policing professionals were traditionally shunned by the Chinese community, which therefore impaired policing efforts among the large Chinese populace. In 1843, the force comprised a sitting magistrate doubling up as a superintendent, three European constables and an assistant native constable, 14 officers and 110 policemen. With a total strength of no more than 150 men, the police was compelled to avoid direct intervention in these mass acts of violence, else risking almost total annihilation.
A repeat of this scenario occurred in 1851, when lingering displeasure against Roman Catholic ethnic Chinese erupted into major rioting leaving over 500 Chinese dead. The army was called in again, although it involved having to induct Indian convicts into military service almost overnight. In 1854, twelve consecutive days of violence sparked by a dispute between the Hokkiens and Teochews disrupted trade. This particular incident led to the formation of the military's Singapore Rifle Corps on 8 July 1854, the earliest predecessor of the Singapore Armed Forces' People's Defence Force today.
However, criminal violence was not merely in the domain of the ethnic Chinese. Rivalries between Malay princes and communities also often result in acts of violence, which prompted the passing of Singapore's first arms law in March 1823 restricting the right to bear arms to 24 of the Malay Sultan's followers. Nearly two centuries later, these anti-arms laws continue to be strictly enforced, resulting in a society relatively free from firearms-related criminal offences.
Modern Day[edit | edit source]
Murder rate in Singapore is reportedly low.
Organisational structure[edit | edit source]
Police Headquarters[edit | edit source]
|Commissioner of Police||Commissioner of Police||CP||Hoong Wee Teck||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Deputy Commissioner of Police (Policy)||Deputy Commissioner of Police||DC(P)||Lim Kok Thai||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Deputy Commissioner of Police (Investigations & Intelligence)||Deputy Commissioner of Police||DC(I&I)||Tan Chye Hee||Police Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block C|
|Deputy Commissioner of Police (Operations)||Deputy Commissioner of Police||DC(Ops)||Lau Peet Meng||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Quality Service Manager||Assistant Commissioner||AC||Oh Lee Meng Maria||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
Staff departments[edit | edit source]
|Administration and Finance Department||A&F||DAC Lee Chwee Huat||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Community Partnership Department||CPD||Unknown||Unknown|
|Digital Technology Department||DTD||Unknown||Unknown|
|Inspectorate and Compliance Office||InCo||DAC Yap Shao Peng||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Internal Affairs Office||IAO||SAC Paramjit Singh||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|International Cooperation Department||ICD||DAC Chua Chee Wai||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Manpower Department||MPD||SAC Teo Chun Ching||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Operations Department||OPS||DC Lau Peet Meng||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Planning and Organisation Department||P&O||AC Alvin Moh||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Police Licensing and Regulatory Department||PLRD||AC Lu Yeow Lim||Police Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block D|
|Police Logistics Department||PLD||SAC Cheang Keng Keong||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Police National Service Department||PNSD||AC Lee Chin Ek||170 Still Road|
|Public Affairs Department||PAD||AC Wilson Lim Hock Lee||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Police Technology Department||PTD||Tay Yeow Koon||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Service Delivery Department||SDD||AC Teo Chor Leng||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
|Training & Capability Development Department||TCR||Unknown||Unknown|
|Volunteer Special Constabulary||VSC||DAC Poh Lye Hin||Police Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block C|
Specialist staff departments[edit | edit source]
|Commercial Affairs Department||CAD||David Chew Siong Tai||Police Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block D|
|Criminal Investigation Department||CID||DC Tan Chye Hee||Police Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block C|
|Police Intelligence Department||PID||SAC Florence Chua||New Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road|
Specialist & Land units[edit | edit source]
The divisions are also named after NATO phonetic alphabet. These include:
- A (Alpha): Central Police Division
- B (Bravo): Toa Payoh Police Division Template:Ref
- C (Charlie): Geylang Police Division Template:Ref
- D (Delta): Clementi Police Division
- E (Echo): Tanglin Police Division
- F (Foxtrot): Ang Mo Kio Police Division
- G (Golf): Bedok Police Division
- J (Juliet): Jurong Police Division
Finances[edit | edit source]
The Singapore Police Force receives the highest budget allocation annually as compared to the various departments of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), typically accounting for about 50% of its annual budget. For the fiscal year of 2013 (for the year beginning 1 April 2013), S$3.89 billion was budgeted to the MHA, of which 47.8%, or S$1.86 billion was allocated for the Police Programme. Actual expenses in the 2013 fiscal year was S$2.04 billion, of which S$1.88 billion was spent on operating expenditure (against the budgeted S$1.79 billion) and S$159.1 million on development expenditure (budgeted at $71.83 million). Manpower costs amounting to S$1.16 billion continue to dominate the SPF's expenditure, accounting for 61.7% of its operating expenditure and 56.9% of total expenditure in FY2013.
|Fiscal Year||Operating Expenditure||Development Expenditure||Total Expenditure|
|2014||S$1,369.52 (est)||S$804.20 (est)||S$2,172.72 (est)||S$1,932.98||S$269.41 (est)||S$205.49||S$2,442.13 (est)||S$2,138.47|
The latest budget for fiscal year 2015, S$2.47 billion was allocated to the Police Programme, or 49.5% of MHA's total budget of S$5 billion (the Ministry of Defence, in comparison, received a S$13.12 billion budget allocation). This includes S$2.26 billion for Operating Expenditure and $210.93 million for Development Expenditure. The main Development Expenditures expected in FY2015 included the construction of new buildings such as the Woodlands Police Divisional HQ as well as the acquisition of new patrol craft for the Police Coast Guard and the installation of police cameras at more HDB blocks and multi-storey car parks.
Manpower[edit | edit source]
As of 31 March 2014, the total strength of the force stands at 41,599, of which 15,031 are full-time staff. Manpower trends in recent years are as follows:
|31 March 2007||7,826||1,206||3,464||20,852||1,049||34,397|
|31 March 2012||8,469||1,262||4,722||unknown||1,146||unknown|
|31 March 2013||8,617||1,423||4,853||24,248||1,212||40,353|
|31 March 2014||8,783||1,544||4,704||25,492||1,076||41,599|
Regulars[edit | edit source]
Regulars, or uniformed, full-time officers, constitute about 20% of the police's total workforce and number approximately 8,000 in strength. Basic entry requirements for police officers include normal fitness levels, good eyesight, and at least five passes in the GCE Ordinary level or a NITEC from the Institute of Technical Education, although those with lower qualifications may still be considered. Those joining the senior police officers require a basic degree from a recognised university. Alternatively, police officers from the junior ranks may also be considered for promotion into the senior ranks. Officers serving in the force as national servicemen are also regularly considered for absorption into the regular scheme. Basic training for all officers are conducted at the Home Team Academy, under the purview of the Police Training Command. It takes about six months and nine months to train a new police officer and senior police officer respectively.
As is the case with many other civil service positions in Singapore, the salaries of police officers are reviewed in accordance to market rates. Salaries are kept competitive as part of anti-corruption measures. Gross starting salaries for police officers may range from S$1,820 to S$2,480, and that of senior police officers from S$3,400 to S$4,770, depending on entry qualifications, relevant/useful work experiences and National Service.
Police officers commence their careers as Sergeants (Full GCE 'A' level or Diploma holders), while senior police officers start as Inspectors (Bachelor's degree). Reviews of an officer's performance for promotion consideration are conducted annually. Interviews conducted for promotion to certain ranks were phased out since 1995. It takes approximately five years for a police officer to be promoted to the next rank, although the system allows for accelerated promotion for outstanding officers.
While joining the force as a career is generally considered a respectable decision in contemporary Singapore, support from the ethnic Malay community has been traditionally stronger due to less social stigma attached to the profession. Traditionally, Chinese culture has eschewed careers in uniformed positions, resulting in a force dominated by non-Chinese officers for most of the force's early history. National servicemen also contribute a higher proportion of ethnic Malays in the force. The current ethnic profile of the force continues to have a significantly higher proportion of ethnic minorities compared to the national ethnic profile, although such an outcome is related to operational demands: police resources are typically deployed with a diverse ethnic mix to decrease communication problems while attending to incidents in ethnically-diverse Singapore.
Competition in the employment market, usually heating up during economic boom times, occasionally depressed the number of police recruits as well as its existing ranks. A series of major incidents in 2008 affecting agencies of the Home Affairs Ministry has led to the ministry conducting a study which concluded that there is a shortage of officers, resulting in officers being "overstretched, strained and over-stressed". In the police force, it was admitted that the recruitment and retention of non-graduate police officers has been "adversely affected by the tighter labour market", with resignation rates increasing by 50% between 2004 and 2007. Recruitment figures, while remaining relatively stable, has been unable to "address the higher demands placed on the Force. Various measures were thus taken in response, including an increase in starting salaries, sign-on bonuses for senior police officers, and retention bonuses of up to S$30,000 for non-graduate police officers in a bid to encourage them to stay for at least eight years, over the five years where many leave at the end of their service bonds.
Police National Servicemen (PNS)[edit | edit source]
When full-time National Service (NS) was first introduced in Singapore way back in 1967, it was initially solely aimed and geared towards the building-up of the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF). Meanwhile, in Singapore's police force, NS was not extended to that of compulsory full-time service, with police NS being only part-time, unlike that of the SAF. There was little urgency and pressure for the police force to increase its overall manpower-strength until the Laju incident of 1974, Singapore's first encounter with international terrorism, demonstrated the need for additional trained reserve-officers who could be called up at short-notice in the event of a national crisis or a major and serious public emergency. Singapore's full-time National Service policy was thus extended to the Singapore Police Force in 1975, which stemmed from the then-primary aim of guarding and protecting key and vital public installations, such as sensitive ones like power substations and petro-chemical industries, and to act as a swift-response reserve unit. Subsequent expansion of this NS scheme, along with changing security needs and requirements and the trend in outsourcing key-installation protection (such as to the various local auxiliary police forces) has expanded the role of police national servicemen to more varied functions, which may range from mainstream administration and operations (such as the role of office-based Staff Assistants (SAs)), to basic police investigation (like under the Ground Response Force (GRF) of the SPF's Land Divisions) to frontline policing (as seen in the Police Coast Guard) alongside their regular counterparts.
Volunteers[edit | edit source]
Template:Main article Formed in 1946, The Volunteer Special Constabulary (VSC) is an important component of the Singapore Police Force, contributing more than fifty years of volunteer service to the nation.
The VSC is composed of volunteers from all walks of life in Singapore, from businessmen to blue-collar executives to even bus captains, bonded with the same aspiration to serve the nation by complementing the Singapore Police Force. They are vested with equal powers of a police officer to enforce law and order in Singapore. VSC Officers don the same police uniform and patrol the streets, participate in anti-drug operations and sometimes even high-speed sea chases.
Civilian staff[edit | edit source]
Civilian staff in the Police Force are deployed in areas such as technology, logistics, human resource and administrative and finance services as well as investigation, planning and intelligence. The civilian staff schemes falls under the general civil service schemes managed by the Public Service Division. These schemes include:
- Commercial Affairs Officer (CAO) Scheme for Accountancy, Law, Business Administration, Business or Economics degree holders
- Commercial Affairs Officer
- Home Team Specialist (HTS) Scheme for degree and diploma holders
- Home Team Specialist
- Home Affairs Senior Executive (HASE) Scheme for degree holders
- Management Executive (MX)
- Management Support Scheme for diploma holders and below
- Management Support Officer (MSO)
- Corporate Support Officer (CSO)
- Technical Support Scheme for diploma holders and below
- Technical Support Officer (TSO)
The civilization of non-core police functions have accelerated over the years in order to free up additional manpower for redeployment into Police Divisions. Other changes include the deployment of contract staff through organisations such as Ministry of Finance's VITAL.org for administrative staff and partners such as Singapore Technologies and Cyber Security Agency for technical support.
Staff welfare[edit | edit source]
- Aquatic Club
- Home United Basketball Club (HUBC)
- Home United Football Club (HUFC)
- JOM - Clubhouse for Police Officers
- Polwel Co-operative Society Limited
- Police Sports Association (PSA)
- Police Welfare Division
- Senior Police Officers' Mess (SPOM)
- Singapore Police Co-operative Society Limited
Uniforms[edit | edit source]
Template:Main article Dark blue (or more accurately Dacron blue) is the organisational colour of the Singapore Police Force, and has remained so continuously since 1969, although the first police uniforms introduced in 1856 were also in the same colour.
On 1 July 1969, dacron blue made a comeback to the uniform with a force-wide change away from khaki overnight, in part to coincide with Singapore's 150th anniversary since its founding in 1819. The new uniform comprises a dark blue peak cap, shirt, trousers, black belt, shoes and socks, and coded whistle lanyard in blue and white. 3 large and 4 small metal buttons, metal collar badges, and a metal cap badge are affixed, and a black plastic name tag completes the uniform. Metallic ranks, if any, are fixed to the sleeve or on the shoulders for senior officers. The lanyard was changed to a metal chain in 1972, and in 1985, the material of the uniform was changed from 75% polyester 25% cotton to 100% polyester for ease of daily maintenance.
Derivatives of the standard blue uniform (collectively called the no.3 uniform) was adopted for specialized forces and for all officers in various occasions which calls for more formal or casual attire. The Traffic Police Department was among the few to move away from the all-blue attire, adopting a short-sleeved white tunic, dark blue breeches, a black leather Sam Browne belt, and riding boots for its officers performing mobile squad duties. A white crash helmet is worn when on the move, while a new dark blue jockey cap with chequered white and dark blue patterns around its circumference is worn when convenient while performing static duty. Members of the Vigilante Corps are also attired by a white short-sleeved top similar in design to the dark blue version for normal officers, gold-coloured buttons and badges, and a dark blue beret in place of the peak cap.
Combat uniforms has also been adopted for specialist units such as those from the Special Operations Command and the Police Coast Guard (PCG), collectively known as the No.4 uniforms. These involve the replacement of metal buttons with sewn-on plastic ones, the avoidance of all other metallic accruements which are deemed potentially hazardous to the officer or to others and the use of long-sleeved shirts.
There was no major change to the uniform since then, except for the adoption of embroidered shoulder ranks and badges for all ranks in the 1990s. Other changes are less distinct, such as the upgrading of shoes used, the change of the belt material and belt buckle to one including the police crest, and the replacement of the peak cap with a baseball cap for NPC officers on front-line duty.
In the past, the police were using their standard issued drill boots for their daily duties; however, using of the drill boots for daily duties such as patrols and chasing after suspects proved impractical as they were severely uncomfortable, causing blisters, or worse, causing the officer to be injured. In 2012, the police trialed the Magnum Stealth Force 6.0 and 8.0, subsequently they became the standard issue for their officers. While the Special Operations Command were previously using the traditional full leather combat boot, the force also rolled out the Magnum Spider 8.1 SZ for their troopers.
In end-2015, the police (and Home Team) rolled out the Frontier 8" Tactical Boot as the replacement for the Magnum Stealth Forces. The newer boots have the same exact features of the Magnum Stealth Force 8.0. Despite criticisms of the Frontier brand from servicemen from the Singapore Army (which has a different design), the 8" Tactical Boots features a vibram out-sole, thicker side cushioning, and slightly more ventilation, which is very comfortable, although the insole of the boot is slightly thinner as compared to the Magnum Stealth Forces, which can be replaced.
In 2008 - 2009, the black engraved plastic name-tags was changed to the black epoxy coated name-tags with the Home Team badge on the left. The name-tags with a safety-pinned backing were a safety hazard when struggling with suspects, progressively, the backing name-tags were fitted with Velcro for ease of fitting, and safety. The previous black engraved plastic name-tags is still in use by the National Police Cadet Corps. All officers under the Home Team are issued with these epoxy name-tags.
On April 16th, 2018, the SPF has introduced new uniforms that are more stretchable, absorb perspiration better and dry faster, and they are made of 98% of polyester and 2% of spandex. The change in uniforms are part of ongoing efforts to enhance operational effectiveness and support in the officers' duty.
These uniforms are only worn by officers from Special Operations Command, the Public Transport Security Command and Ground Response Force when they work in the front-line patrol and deployment. The word “police” will be embroidered above the name tag of the new uniforms and the metallic buttons will also be replaced by more comfortable, but concealed plastic buttons, which will make it easier for officers to wear body vests over their uniforms. Riveted buttons will be fixed on the shoulders for a body-camera attachment.
Ranks[edit | edit source]
A standard rank structure is used throughout the police force, although some ranks may be unique to specific organisations. These ranks are denoted where applicable in the following list, which lists them in ascending seniority:
Police officers[edit | edit source]
The rank of Corporal was abolished in 1972, but reinstated in 1976. In 1997, all ranks were shifted from the sleeves to the epaulettes, except for the Gurkha Contingent. Also in the same year, the Station Inspector rank was changed from collar pips to epaulettes with a new design similar to that of the SAF Warrant Officers, and the rank of Senior Station Inspector was introduced. In 1998, the Senior Station Inspector (2) rank was introduced, and changes were made to the SI, SSI, and SSI(2) rank designs. The rank of Lance Corporal was abolished in 2002. The 2006, the Gurkha Contingent adopted embroidered ranks as part of an overhaul of its combat dress, but are worn on the right front pocket. There was a major rank overhaul in 2016 with the removal of the ranks of CPL, SSGT, SSI and SSI(2), as well as the removal of the distinction between "Police Officers" and "Senior Police Officers" in what is now called a "unified police scheme".
|Special Constable||SC||TSC||-||SC||SC (NS)||-||-|
|Corporal (Obsolete)||CPL||TCPL||CPL||SC/CPL||CPL (NS)||CPL (V)||CPL|
|Sergeant||SGT||TSGT||SGT||SC/SGT||SGT (NS)||SGT (V)||SGT|
|Staff Sergeant (Obsolete)||SSGT||-||SSGT||-||SSGT (NS)||SSGT (V)||SSGT|
|Senior Staff Sergeant||SSSGT||-||SSSGT||-||SSSGT (NS)||SSSGT (V)||SSSGT|
|Station Inspector||SI||-||SI||-||SI (NS)||SI (V)||SI|
|Senior Station Inspector (Obsolete)||SSI||-||SSI||-||SSI (NS)||SSI (V)||-|
|Senior Station Inspector (2) (Obsolete)||SSI (2)||-||SSI (2)||-||SSI(2) (NS)||SSI(2)(V)||-|
|INSP (NS)||INSP (V)||INSP|
|Assistant Superintendent||ASP||P/ASP||ASP||ASP(NS)||ASP (V)||ASP|
|Deputy Superintendent||DSP||-||DSP||-||DSP(NS)||DSP (V)||DSP|
|Deputy Assistant Commissioner||DAC||-||DAC||-||DAC(NS)||DAC (V)||DAC|
|Senior Assistant Commissioner||SAC||-||SAC||-||-||-||-|
|Deputy Commissioner of Police||DCP/DC||-||DCP||-||-||-||-|
|Commissioner of Police||CP||-||CP||-||-||-||-|
Weapons[edit | edit source]
Police officers in the various divisions are armed when conducting regular uniformed patrols and plainclothes duties. Officers from different units are issued with different weapons.
The standard layout of a regular right handed officer's duty belt/ops kit consists of the followings in a clockwise direction;
- 1. Ammunition pouch with speed loader containing 5 rounds of .38 special PMC cartridges.
- 2. Taurus Model 85, 3 inch barrel revolver with 5 rounds of .38 special PMC cartridges. (Holstered in a snatch-resistant holster provided by SAFARILAND).
- 3. A set of Smith & Wesson Handcuffs.
- 4. Monadnock PR-21 T-Baton/ASP Expandable Baton.
- 5. Motorola MTP6550 Portable Radio Set.
- 6. X26 Taser (For Regular Officers)
The 5-shot .38 Taurus Model 85 with 3 inch barrel featuring a laser sight by Crimson Trace is the standard issued sidearm of the Singapore Police Force with 10 rounds of ammunition. For less-than-lethal option, most policemen are issued a Monadnock PR-21 side handle baton to enhance their defensive capabilities. Starting from 2016, the CZ P-07 semi-automatic pistol will gradually replace the Taurus Model 85 revolver in front-line policing.
Expandable batons are used by some units such as Security Command and the Sabre Red pepper spray canisters are exclusively equipped to the officers of Police Coast Guard and Police Tactical Unit. A pair of handcuffs is issued to the officers as restrains.
The Taser X26 stun gun is part of the officer equipment, which provides another non-lethal means of subduing suspects. Despite some safety concerns due to incidents experienced by foreign police forces, the weapon was deemed suitable for use by trained personnel, and was rolled out across other NPCs.
Heckler & Koch USP pistols are known to be used by the Special Operations Command, Police Tactical Unit, Criminal Investigation Department and Security Command. Officers of Police Coast Guard's Special Task Squadron are issued with Glock 19 semi-automatic pistol and Special Tactics and Rescue (STAR) acquired the Swiss-made Sphinx 3000 pistol, replacing the previous used Glock pistols.
Addition to the use of the handguns, Singapore Police Force also uses the Heckler & Koch MP5 sub-machine gun and the Remington 870 shotgun while specialized weapons are issued to the STAR and KINS units, such as the Sphinx 3000, FN SCAR, M4S1, M16S1, SIG-522, G22, SAR-21 rifles, MATADOR anti-armor weapon system and a variegated arsenal of sniper rifles.
Equipment[edit | edit source]
The primary communication tool carried by each officer is through a common digital radio set used by Home Team organizations. In the first half of the 21st century, this was provided by Matra Nortel Communications/EADS based on TETRAPOL technology. In 2013, a contract was awarded to Motorola Communications for a replacement communication network (MCN2) using TETRA technology (Motorola Dimetra) with the first units being deployed in 2015. Whereas for secondary communication, officers are given the option to utilise the Mobile Data Terminal (MDT) or their personal issued Personal Digital Assistant, also known as Cubicon 2 in which real time information can be communicated between the officer and command center or ops room.
Strict enforcement of anti-arm laws which are in existence in Singapore since 1823 has resulted in a relatively disarmed society, where firearms-related crimes are rare. It is therefore not an operational requirement for police officers to wear bullet resistant vests when conducting normal policing duties. However, vests, helmets, and shields are carried in police vehicles and stocked in police establishments and can be rapidly utilize should the situation require it. In addition, chemical protection equipment such as suit, gloves, boots and NBC masks etc. are readily available to be drawn from the maintenance stores. Special units such as the KINS unit are known for utilising the skeletal battle order vest as a direct alternative to the ops kit belt for as they are issued with firearm magazines while on duty. From 2004, new multi-purpose vests were introduced which offer officers protection against most handgun fire, knife thrusts, as well as doubling up as a buoyancy vest should officers fall into deep water.
Vehicles[edit | edit source]
Land division officers typically respond to calls in rapid-deployment vehicles known as the Fast Response Car (FRC). The SPF have been staunch users of Japanese-made saloon cars since the 1980s for patrol duties, with the mainstay models in use being the various generations of the Mitsubishi Lancers, Mazda 323s and Toyota Corollas. At the turn of the century they have also included Nissan Sunnys, Subaru Impreza 1.6 TS sedans (not to be confused with the Subaru Impreza WRX used by the Traffic Police) in 2012 the traffic police have included the Volvo S80 T5.
All FRCs carry a large array of equipment to allow officers to conduct normal policing duties and basic investigative work which officers are expected to perform with the implementation of the Neighbourhood Police Centre (NPC) system. A typical FRC vehicle may therefore stock equipment for the force-opening of locked doors, conducting roadblocks, fingerprint collection, and the provision of first aid. On top of these, chemical agent protection equipment, police shields and bulletproof vests are also carried for the officer's protection.
In 2002, the Enhanced Patrol Vehicle Project was unveiled at the SPF's annual work-plan seminar to highlight the need for off-road capability. The Volvo V70 AWD XC, Mitsubishi Space Wagon and Mitsubishi Chariot underwent evaluation in various NPCs. Eventually, all NPCs were to have at least three of such vehicles, but the project was met with skepticism by some of the public, stating that the police need not use such "luxurious vehicles" for police patrols. In 2004, the new Fast Response Vehicle (FRV) was introduced, consisting of cheaper modified Toyota Hi-Lux sport utility vehicles. These vehicles utilise diesel-power which provide greater ability to endure high usage on the roads over extensive periods of time. Their bigger storage space also allows for easier storage and retrieval of equipment.
In 2009, the SPF had introduced large truck-sized Forward Command Vehicles in which they were utilised for command and control during the simulated terrorist attacks in Singapore as part of Exercise Northstar VII.
Other vehicles typically used in NPCs include the scooters and vans. Bicycles, although currently less seen, are still used by land division officers belonging to the Community Policing Unit (CPU) occasionally, particularly when conducting routine patrols in large, sprawling private housing estates. At NDP 2007, the Singapore Police Force unveiled a Tenix S600 APC (Armored Personnel Carrier) had been purchased for its operations for the Special Operations Command and in NDP 2015, the Achleitner HMV Survivor and the Gurkha MPV by Terradyne Armored Vehicles Inc was unveiled.
In 2017, the SPF had introduced new Division Command Vehicles with greater mobility designed to enhance command, control and coordination, as well as new unmanned aerial vehicles with red and blue siren lights, a searchlight, a high-definition camera and an audio warning system. The UAVs are controlled by two-man teams (consisting of a pilot and a safety officer) and are designed to conduct search and rescue operations, attending public order incidents, traffic management, hostage situations and crowd monitoring.
For weaponry, equipment and vehicles of the various specialist forces, please see their respective pages for details.
Auxiliary Police Forces[edit | edit source]
In Singapore, auxiliary police officers are security police appointed under Section 92(1) or (2) of the Police Force Act 2004 and are vested with all the power, protection and immunity of a Police Officer of corresponding rank and are licensed to carry firearms when carrying out their duties.
These armed auxiliary police officers (APO) are full-time paid employees of their respective companies, and are not directly affiliated to the Singapore Police Force. They are appointed as auxiliary police officers only after attending and passing a residential course, the curriculum of which is set by the Security Industry Regulatory Dept. of the Singapore Police Force. Each APO is issued with a warrant card signed by the Commissioner Of Police of the Singapore Police Force.
- Aetos Security Management Private Limited (CIAS / PSA / ST Kinetics)
- Certis CISCO Security Private Limited - The oldest and largest auxiliary.
- Singapore Airport Terminal Services (SATS) Auxiliary Police Force
There were also other auxiliary police forces in Singapore in the early years such as PSA Police, and Bukom Auxiliary Police. These APF were granted licences and powers under the Police Force Act to operate only in restricted geographical areas e.g. in the ports or airports or Pulau Bukom Island.
The Singapore Police Force (SPF) established the Security Industry Regulatory Department in 2004 to regulate the security industry.
More recently, the shortage of SPF officers has caused the role of auxiliary police forces to expand to enforcement, attending to road related incidents such as vehicle collision scenes and conducting patrol duties, even working alongside the Singapore Police Force themselves.
Defunct assets[edit | edit source]
Defunct divisions and establishments[edit | edit source]
- Old Police Academy (Template:Coord) - vacated in 2006, relocated to Old Choa Chu Kang Road as part of the Home Team Academy, leaving behind the Police National Service provost unit and Traffic Police driving test school. The accommodation barracks and training facilities of the Old Police academy currently houses the training departments for all auxiliary police forces in Singapore.
- Geylang Police Division (Template:Coord) defunct 'C' Division HQ - closed and vacated in 2000, areas of responsibility was divided between 'A', 'F' & 'G' Divisions. Station's status - Currently in use by Geylang NPC under 'G' Bedok Police Division and by Public Transport Security Command.
- Toa Payoh Police Division (Template:Coord) defunct 'B' Division HQ - closed and vacated in 1988, areas of responsibility was divided between 'E' & 'F' Divisions. Station was refurbished and is currently in use by Security Command.
Land Divisions[edit | edit source]
- Beach Road Police Station (Template:Coord) - former site of 'A' Division HQ, vacated in 2000 and became South Beach, Singapore. It is also the former NCO Club, where it was closed in 1994.
- Eu Tong Sen Street Police Station (Template:Coord) - former HQ site of CAD, CID & VSC since 1994, vacated in 2001 and was transferred to the charge of SLA. Station status pending.
- Joo Chiat Police Station (Template:Coord) - former site of 'G' Division HQ, vacated in 1987 and was transferred to the charge of SLA, which in turn released the premises for use by private developers.
- Old Hill Street Police Station (Template:Coord) - vacated in 1980, this old police station and barracks was renovated in 1983 and became part of MCCY and MCI.
- Paya Lebar Police Station (Template:Coord) - former site of 'F' Division HQ, vacated in 1987, now became 2nd Division HQ SCDF.
- Queenstown Police Station (Template:Coord) - former site of 'D' Division HQ, vacated in 1988, now became 1st Division HQ SCDF.
- Orchard Police Station - former site of 'E' Division HQ, demolished in 1983, now became ION Orchard and Orchard MRT Station.
- Old Tanglin Police Station (Template:Coord) - former site of 'E' Division HQ, vacated in 2001, now became Interpol Global Complex for Innovation.
- Taman Jurong Police Station (Template:Coord) - vacated in 1980 and demolished in 1988, the surrounding land at the site has been redeveloped as a HDB housing precinct.
- Ama Keng Neighbourhood Police Post (Template:Coord) sited directly across the road from Ama Keng Chinese Temple in Lim Chu Kang, the station was closed and demolished in 1980, currently replaced by a military training area.
- Bukit Panjang Neighbourhood Police Post (old)
- Pasir Panjang Neighbourhood Police Post (old) (Template:Coord) - closed and vacated in 1986 following the inauguration of Pasir Panjang NPP & West Coast NPP. Demolished in 1991, the surrounding land at site was redeveloped as a private condominium - The Spectrum.
- Woodlands Neighbourhood Police Post (Template:Coord) - closed in 1999 (located within the old Woodlands Checkpoint building since 1980), Woodlands Neighbourhood Police Centre has since taken over its duty.
- Kranji Neighbourhood Police Post (Template:Coord) - closed and vacated in 1997 following the inauguration of Yew Tee NPP, building was demolished for land clearing to build factory.
Police Coast Guard[edit | edit source]
- Kallang Regional Base (Template:Coord) - vacated in 2007, relocated to Brani Regional Base at Pulau Brani, status pending.
- Jurong Regional Base (Template:Coord) - vacated in 1999, relocated to Gul Regional Base, base was demolished to make way for the Jurong Island Highway.
- Pulau Sakeng Police Post (Template:Coord) - closed and vacated in 1987 after the last islander left, the island was subsumed by the land reclamation process of the nearby Pulau Semakau. The Semakau landfill receiving station was built on top of the island after the reclamation process.
- Seletar Regional Base - vacated in 2005, relocated to Loyang Regional Base, base was demolished to make way for the Seletar Aerospace Park.
[edit | edit source]
- In the service of the nation, 1985
- 999: True Cases from the CID, 1987
- Service to the Nation: 50 years of the Volunteer Special Constabulary, 1998
- Policing Singapore in the 19th & 20th centuries, 2002
- Justice is Done, 2005
- The Adventures of Constable Acai, 1987: A series of crime stories, based on actual crimes from police files were compiled into story books from the popular children's magazine Young Generation, about the adventures of a fictional policeman named Constable Acai. They were written by officers from the Crime Prevention Department to instill crime awareness in children during the 80's through to the mid 90's. The other books in this series are as below:
- Operation Firestorm, 1997
- Drama Series
- Seletar Robbery (实里达大劫案), 1982
- CID '83, 1983
- First Step (踏上征途), 1986: On women in the police force
- Patrol (铁警雄风), 1989: A take on the lives of the men in the Traffic Police Department
- Private Eyes (妙探智多星), 1991
- Ladies in action (霹雳红唇), 1992
- Crime and Passion (執法先鋒), 1992
- Lethal Duo (天使追辑令), 1994
- Dr Justice (法医故事), 1994
- Neighbourhood Heroies (大英雄小人物), 1995
- Triple Nine, 1995-1998: On the adventures of a CID team.
- Secret Files (机密档案), 1995
- The Shadow Mission (地下猎人), 1995
- The Dragons Five (飞龙五将), 1995
- Dr Justice II (法医故事II), 1996
- City Cops (警网双雄), 1996
- Of Cops And Men (城市双雄), 1996
- Pursuit of Justice (石破天惊), 1997
- Act 235 (刑事235), 1998
- Dare To Strike (扫冰者), 14 November 2000: the phrase "Dare to Strike" is the motto of the Central Narcotics Bureau
- The Reunion (顶天立地), 26 December 2001
- Heartlanders, 2002-2005: On two Neighbourhood Police Centre officers
- True Heroes (真心英雄), 5 May 2003: On a rookie Neighbourhood Police Centre officer
- The Frontline (家在前线), 2003: This fictional six-part TV show depicts how Singaporeans cope after the German mastermind of a neo-anarchist organisation sets off a bomb at a naval base as an anti-imperialistic statement against Singapore's ties with the United States. It showcases the capabilities of the Singapore Police Force and the Singapore Armed Forces to deal with terrorism. Many technologies introduced in this series has never been before shown to the public. It is also the only local television series to date to accurately depict the Police's elite Special Tactics and Rescue (STAR) team and the Army's Special Operations Forces (SOF) although the latter unit was never addressed by name in the show. They were instead referred to as "The Commandos".
- When the Time Comes (一线之间), 2004
- The Crime Hunters (心网追凶), 2004
- Police & Thief, 2004–2010
- Life Line, 2005–2007
- Zero to Hero (阴差阳错), 2005
- Without Warning, 2006
- The Undisclosed (迷云二十天), 2006
- C.I.D. (刑警2人组), 12 June 2006
- Metamorphosis (破茧而出), 18 September 2007
- Crime Busters x 2 (叮当神探), 30 September 2008
- Unriddle (最火搭档), 2010
- Vettai : Pledged to Hunt (வேட்டை), 23 November 2010 - 30 March 2011
- C.L.I.F. (警徽天职), 2011: First drama to be produced in close collaboration with the Singapore Police Force. The second and third seasons were aired in 2013 and 2014 respectively, and the fourth in September 2016.
- Unriddle 2 (最火搭档2), 2012
- Vettai 2.0: The Next Generation (வேட்டை 2.0), 4 January 2012 - 11 May 2013
- Vettai 3: The Final Judgement (வேட்டை 3), 17 November 2014 – present
- Mata-Mata Season 1,2013:background post-World War II in Singapore and establish woman police
- Mata-Mata Season 2,2014:A New Era,background after separation Singapore from Malaysia and secret soceity 70's
- Mata-Mata Season 3,2016:A New Generation,background development Singapore and crime late 70's,early 80's and now
- The Last Blood (驚天十二小時), 1991
- Ace Cops (妙警点三八), 1996: Telemovie
- Life On The Line (魂断四面佛), 1996: Telemovie
- 2000 AD (公元2000), 1999
- After School (放学后), 2004: A film released by the National Crime Prevention Council to harness the power of cinema as a public education tool to reach out to young Singaporeans and their families.
See also[edit | edit source]
- Project Griffin
- Major crimes in Singapore
- Law enforcement in Singapore
- List of law enforcement agencies
- Internal Security Department
- Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau
References[edit | edit source]
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Singapore PUBLIC ORDER AND INTERNAL SECURITY - Flags, Maps, Economy, History, Climate, Natural Resources, Current Issues, International Agreements, Population, Social Statistics, Political System
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- Farquhar to Raffles, 5 May 1820, L.10, Straits Settlement Records.
- Farquhar to Raffles, 2 November 1819, L. 10, Straits Settlement Records.
- Jennings to Farquhar, 15 August 1820, L. 4, Straits Settlement Records.
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Bibliography[edit | edit source]
- "In the Service of the Nation", John Drysdale, Federal Publications, 1985 Template:ISBN
- "Phoenix: the story of the Home Team ", Felix Soh, Times Editions, 2003 Template:ISBN
- "Policing Singapore in the 19th & 20th centuries", Peer M. Akbur, Singapore Police Force, 2002 Template:ISBN
- "Singapore Police Force Annual", Singapore Police Force, several editions