corpunWorld Corporal Punishment Research

ruler   :  Archive   :  1999   :  SG Judicial Apr 1999



Judicial CP - April 1999


Straits Times, Singapore, 3 April 1999

Ex-cop gets longer jail term

He and two others received heavier sentences after they appealed. The three men kidnapped and held three immigration offenders last year

By Lim Seng Jin


A FORMER police officer and two other men who abducted and held three immigration offenders in a house in Upper Bukit Timah last year have had their jail terms increased substantially.

Two of them, including J. V. Chandra Morgan, 32, a former corporal with the Jurong Police Division, are also to be caned.

Describing the ex-police officer as a "ringleader", Chief Justice Yong Pung How upped his jail term on Thursday, from 3 years to six years. He will be caned six strokes.

So will Sowosaismuthu, 37, who is unemployed.

His jail term was increased from 3 years to 5 years.

The pair had assaulted Mr Sundaram Thandava Moorthy, 30, an Indian national who had overstayed.

Samuel Thomas, 32, an odd-job labourer, had his jail term increased from 1 years to 2 years.

But he was spared the cane as he had played a limited role, said CJ Yong.

The High Court handed down the heavier sentences after the three men as well as the prosecution appealed.

The prosecution said that the original sentences of between 1 and 3 years were too light.

The three men argued that they were too heavy and had also appealed against their convictions, but without success.

Last October, Chandra Morgan, Thomas and Sowosaismuthu were found guilty by District Judge Abdul Rahim Abdul Jalil after a 30-day trial.


Copyright 1999 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved.

Corpun file 3498


Straits Times, Singapore, 6 April 1999

30 years' jail, cane, for raping daughter

The father began forcing her to have oral sex when she was seven, and started raping her when she was 14

By Elena Chong

A FATHER was yesterday sentenced to a total of 30 years' jail and 24 strokes of the cane for abusing his daughter sexually over a decade -- the severest sentence ever meted out for such an offence.

The 37-year-old man, who cannot be named to protect the girl's identity, started forcing her to have oral sex when she was seven. This went on until she turned 14, when he raped her.

The sexual attacks continued until she ran away from home last August and confided in her former neighbours, who told her to report him to the police.

The father, a former factory worker, had claimed trial to four counts of rape in March or April 1996, and last July, Aug 7 and Aug 10. He also denied three charges of unnatural sex in August or September 1995, in 1997 and last June. Judicial Commissioner Tay Yong Kwang said he was satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that the father was guilty and handed out the following sentences after a four-day trial: Five years' jail on each of the three unnatural sex offences. Fifteen years and 12 strokes on each of the four rape charges.

He ordered that two 15-year jail terms run consecutively, and all other jail terms run concurrently.

The man will receive a total of 24 strokes, because that is the maximum allowed under the law. The maximum sentence for rape is 20 years' jail and not fewer than 12 strokes. The prosecution withdrew one charge of unnatural sex and one of possession of two obscene video tapes.

The girl testified that she felt ashamed and had no one to turn to. She said her mother knew about the sexual abuse from the start, but blamed her for what had happened.

She said she gave in to her father because he would scold and beat her when she resisted. He also threatened to hurt 11 her three younger brothers.

One of her brothers, now 10, testified that he saw her performing oral sex on their father in the living room in 1997. The father was unrepresented and admitted to the charge of unnatural sex that was later withdrawn. He accused his daughter of making up the other attacks to punish him.

He alleged that she had a lover who instigated her to make up these stories. He also accused her of plotting with a former neighbour to frame him.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Mark Hwang said the father was "wildly grasping at straws" and that his evidence was full of contradictions and inconsistencies.

Pressing for a deterrent sentence, DPP Ravneet Kaur said the father abused his position of trust and robbed the girl of her innocence.

She said after repeated abuse, the girl stopped resisting him and, "in the victim's own words, the accused started treating her like his wife".

The DPP added that the girl would have to live with the painful memory of what her father had done to her for the rest of her life.

Corpun file 3499


Straits Times, Singapore, 7 April 1999

Man who raped daughter gets 12 years' jail

He started abusing his daughter when she was 13, and also abused four of his daughter's friends. The judge ordered 12 strokes of the cane as well

By Elena Chong

ANOTHER case of incest was brought before the High Court yesterday, involving a father who had molested and raped his teenage daughter -- and had even sexually abused four of her friends.

The daily-rated worker was sentenced to 12 years' jail and ordered to be caned 12 times.

This was despite his attempts to apologise and pleas from his wife that he was "a very considerate man and a good husband who takes care of the family".

The defence counsel's mitigation that he had never intended to harm his "favourite child" and that his sexual overdrive had caused him to commit his "silly offences" also did not seem to find favour with the court.

Said Justice Lai Kew Chai: "It seems to me that the sentence must emphasise the public's disapproval and must serve as a warning to others."

The man, 43, faced a total of 86 charges, including offences under the Films Act.

He molested three of his daughter's friends and raped a fourth.

But the prosecution proceeded on only five of the charges -- one molest and two each of rape and unnatural sex -- acts which he forced on his mildly-retarded daughter, the eldest of three children.

The other charges were taken into consideration.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Dr R.D. Gangatharan said the man started abusing his daughter in May 1996 when she was 13 years old.

She was sleeping alone that night when he ripped off her clothes and molested her, while holding on to her legs to prevent her from struggling.

He warned her not to tell anyone about what he had done or he would beat her.

In August 1997, the man came into her bedroom "on the pretext of checking whether the victim was still a virgin".

He pulled down her shorts and said she was not a virgin.

He then asked her to perform oral sex as, he said, his wife, the victim's mother, would not do it.

After abusing her, he raped her. He raped her again a month later.

Then on Aug 8 last year, the man forced the girl, now 16, to masturbate and perform oral sex on him in the living room while the other family members were asleep.

Six days later, she made a police report.

By then, the police had already begun investigating him for certain sexual offences.

Pressing for a stiff sentence, Dr Gangatharan said the father had abused his position of trust and subjected the girl to his cruel acts for his selfish sexual gratification.

He continued with his "loathsome" acts when his production operator-wife was working on night shifts.

The court, he said, should send a clear message that those who sexually assault their own young children would be dealt with severely.

In mitigation, defence counsel S.S. Dhillon said his client, a first offender, was truly remorseful.

He raped his daughter only after he found out that she was no longer a virgin.

He also said the girl was no angel herself, as she had run away from home.

She had had various relationships with other men even before the present offences as well, he said.

At one point, he turned to the girl who was in court yesterday to ask if she would accept her father's apologies.

She shook her head and said no.

Also in court was the accused's wife who urged Justice Lai to be sympathetic.

"He is a very considerate man. We do not fight. He is a good husband. He takes care of the family," she said in Malay.

But Justice Lai said that rape was a very serious offence.

In this case, the aggravating factor was that the accused had subjected his daughter to various unnatural sex acts.

He sentenced him to one year for molest, two years each for oral sex, and six years and six strokes each for rape.

The sentences for the two rape charges are to run consecutively, and the rest, concurrently.

Corpun file 3533


The New Paper, Singapore, 14 April 1999



Yesterday, Somrata (above) was sentenced to 11 years' jail and 24 strokes of the cane on two charges of abetting two men to rob his parents. The penalty for each charge is three to 14 years' jail and a minimum of 12 strokes of the cane.

Newton murders:
Meet the boyfriend who lied, lied, lied...

IT was a relationship that began with a simple lie about his age.

But it soon became a tale of one lie after another to cover up a dark secret: Somrata Sae Tang's mother and stepfather were dead because he had planned a robbery. He needed money to fly off to Hongkong to see his girlfriend there.


Before they first met, Somrata, then 24, said he was 36.

His chubby frame did make him look much older.

But he confessed after their first meeting.

He said he was scared Ms Betty Chiu, 41, wouldn't like him.

Marriage was soon on the cards.

Never mind that Somrata had a young daughter from a previous affair.

That happened in Bangkok after he began working there as a teacher and computer consultant in 1993.

Somrata came to know Ms Chiu, a telephone operator with Hongkong Telecoms, in June 1997.

He had called Hongkong to ask about the nail polish market there and which brands were popular.

He was then working for his godmother who dealt in cosmetics.

Soon, their conversations strayed to personal matters.

He called Ms Chiu often.

He was impressive - able to speak Thai, Japanese, Mandarin and many dialects.

They exchanged letters and photos.

Within months, they were like a couple.

Ms Chiu wanted him to meet her in Hongkong on Feb 12 last year - just two days before Valentine's Day.

But Somrata had no money.

He didn't want to approach his mother, who had just settled a $12,000 personal debt for him.

When he said he couldn't meet her as promised, Ms Chiu became upset.

She had been ready to fly back from Taiwan in time to receive him at Hongkong airport.

She was there visiting her parents.

So Somrata planned the robbery.

And flew off about 12 hours after his parents were stabbed to death.

He could only stay in Hongkong for one month at a time, so he kept going to Macau and returning again.


When Ms Chiu urged Somrata to call his mother, Madam Molee Sae Tuang, at home, he cooked up more tall tales.

He said nobody picked up the phone at his parents' Balestier Road flat.

That the line was busy.

That maybe his mother and stepfather had gone travelling.

Ms Chiu never imagined that Somrata was on the run from Singapore police.


Somrata even lied about the $4,000 he put in Ms Chiu's bank account to be converted to Hongkong dollars.

He claimed it was earned from doing renovation work.

It was actually the loot from the fatal robbery.


Later, when the $4,000 was running out, Ms Chiu told him to call his mother.

After all, Madam Molee and her second husband ran a mincemeat noodle stall at Newton Circus and a labour supply agency.

Again, Somrata pretended he couldn't get through.

Meanwhile, he spent time with Ms Chiu, travelling between Thailand and Hongkong.


Then Somrata called a cousin in Malaysia to "check" on his mum's whereabouts.

That's when he "found out" his mother was murdered.

He told Ms Chiu all that in June last year - about four months after the murder.

Ms Chiu was with him when police arrested Somrata at Changi Airport last September.

He was returning to collect his mother's death certificate so that he could inherit her property.


BEFORE Somrata left his parents' flat, he knelt in front of the bedroom where their bodies lay. He apologised to his mum.

Sometime after midnight on Feb 12 last year, Somrata had sneaked into his parents' Balestier Road flat to light some incense that would induce sleep. It failed.

He then opened the flat door to two men instructed to rob his Thai mother, 54, and Singaporean stepfather, Mr Quek Swee Kia, 44.

But the couple woke up and were stabbed to death by the men.

Then he drove the men, who are at large now, to a deserted area in Changi to throw away their knives.


The Electric New Paper. Copyright 1999
Singapore Press Holdings. All Rights Reserved.

Corpun file 3556


The New Paper, Singapore, 20 April 1999



Xue Hua Mei was jailed nine years for gang robbery. Her lover, Shi Ai Hua, 48, (above), and his son, Xu Xiang, 20, (below) were also jailed nine years and ordered to be given 12 strokes of the cane for the same crime. Two other accomplices are still at large. The penalty for gang robbery is five to 20 years' jail and at least 12 strokes of the cane.

Cry, cry, cry... you robbed and killed my husband, you know.
- Wife of coffeeshop owner to China woman (left)
They tied him up and robbed him, and he later died of suffocation. Yesterday, after a 20-day trial filled with tales of sex, lies and drama, China woman Xue Hua Mei and two accomplices were jailed nine years each for gang robbery. JASON TAN reports on the drama
ON Friday the accused provided the drama when she fainted while pleading for leniency.
Yesterday, it was coffeeshop owner Tang See Teng's family who created a stir in the High Court after the sentencing.
As Xue Hua Mei, 31, was being led away by a female police officer, Mr Tang's wife suddenly shouted at her in Mandarin: "Cry, cry, cry... you robbed and killed my husband, you know."
Tang's daughter also lashed out at her from the public gallery. Xue looked shocked.
Then she put her head down as she was led away, her eyes red from crying.
The court police officers promptly closed the front door of Court No 8 as the victim's family was about to leave.
About a minute later, after Xue had left the scene, the door was opened.
But the drama wasn't over.
Outside the court room, the victim's daughter suddenly burst out in front of reporters: "The culprits could say whatever they liked in court. But did they let my father have a chance to talk?"
She was referring to Xue's allegations that the victim had molested and raped her.
The victim's family cannot be named to protect them as two of the accomplices in the case are still at large.
The daughter, who looked to be in her 30s, then lost her cool and uttered some unprintable claims. Reporters looked at each other uneasily.
No one dared to approach the family for interviews because they appeared upset.
Then suddenly, the victim's wife slumped backwards against a wall with a loud thud.
The elderly woman pounded her chest heavily, and said in a choked voice: "I'm not satisfied... My husband died for no reason."
No one expected her to break down because she had turned up for every court session and had been composed throughout.
But yesterday, when everything was over, she wept nosily. "What to do... what to do?"
Her daughter, who was nearby, said:
"See, not only the culprit can cry. The victim's wife is crying too."
Then she led her mother away.
'I'm a dumb woman'
DRESSED in a red shirt and brown jacket, Xue stood unsteadily in the dock as she gave her mitigation.
In between sobs, she said: "I have no education. I'm not bright, Your Honour.
"I came to Singapore because I could not depend on my husband in China."
"Had I been a bright woman, I would not have worked at a construction site doing a man's job."
"If I had known my life would be this tough, I would have worked in a karaoke lounge."
At this point, Judicial Commissioner Amarjeet Singh looked at her and asked: "Anything else?"
She said: "I admit I was in the wrong. I'm a simple-minded woman.
"I pray that the court will pass a light sentence."
ON June 30 last year, 57-year-old Tang See Teng and Xue went to Katong Park Hotel to have sex.
Later, she called her lover, Shi Ai Hua, and let in three other accomplices waiting outside the room.
Mr Tang was pinned down and bound and gagged with the hotel's bedsheets. He suffocated to death.
His $8,000 Rolex watch, diamond ring and Nokia handphone were taken.
Seven used bus tickets found on the hotel floor led to the arrest of Xue and Shi, 10 days later.
Xue told police that the deceased had molested and raped her, and she wanted to teach him a lesson.

The Electric New Paper. Copyright 1999
Singapore Press Holdings. All Rights Reserved.

Corpun file 3552


Straits Times, Singapore, 24 April 1999

Son of 'guru' gets jail for extortion bid

The 19-year-old is also ordered to be caned for trying to extort $3 million from a former follower of his father

By Karen Wong

THE son of a self-styled religious guru in Malacca was yesterday found guilty of trying to extort $3 million from a woman who had been a follower of his father.

Lee Yoon Kun, 19, who is unemployed, had left a death threat for Miss Tan Eng Chye, 56, in a note placed outside her house in Telok Kurau on Sept 17 last year. Lee, a Malaysian, was sentenced to three years' jail and six strokes of the cane.

He has been granted $200,000 bail pending the outcome of an appeal. His passport has been impounded by the police.

In the note, Lee had threatened to kill Miss Tan if she did not pay up in cash.

Lee had plotted the extortion with a friend, Yoon Ming Yee, 19. Yoon pleaded guilty to extortion last October and is now serving his jail term.

Miss Tan had left the "guru" a few months before the incident.

She told the court: "I read the note and I got the shock of my life."

At Lee's trial, Yoon testified that about a week before the extortion bid, Lee had told him he had a "rich auntie" in Singapore from whom they could get money.

They drove to Singapore on Sept 16 and at about 2 am on Sept 17, Lee took him to Miss Tan's house. Lee had been there before with his father, the court heard.

Yoon said he put the envelope outside her house. He said: "The accused asked me to deliver the letter, he was afraid that his auntie might recognise him."

Later that day, at about 11.30 pm, police ambushed Lee and Yoon outside Planet Hollywood, Orchard Road, where Miss Tan had been told to leave the $3 million.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Christopher Ong yesterday told the court that Lee had hatched the extortion bid and participated fully in it.

Aside from greed, he had another reason to scheme against Miss Tan -- there was animosity between them.

Lee had told the court that he disliked Miss Tan because she had been telling people that his father was a conman.

He said in his defence yesterday that it was Yoon who had typed the extortion note. He did not know what was in it.

He claimed that when he gave Miss Tan's name to Yoon and drove him to her house, he was only helping him as a "friend", and did not know what Yoon was up to.

He said he only knew that Yoon, who was unemployed, needed the money.

He denied conspiring with Yoon, and said a few times in Mandarin during his testimony: "I am innocent."

But DPP Ong said it was "unbelievable that Lee could be so foolish and blind" as to help Yoon when he did not know what Yoon was up to.

Copyright 1999 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved.

Corpun file 3573


Straits Times, Singapore, 30 April 1999

Man extorted $245,000 from woman

Fortune teller who threatened to show compromising pictures of a woman to her hubby gets jail, caning

By Elena Chong

A MAN who threatened to show a woman's husband some photographs of him having sex with his wife was sentenced to a total of seven years' jail and 20 strokes of the cane yesterday. Ang Cheng Hock alias Lim Yew Ngiap, 44, described by the judge as a "wolf in sheep's clothing", was a fortune teller and geomancer before his arrest and remand last October. Ang, who has tattoos all over, shook his head when he was sentenced. He is appealing.

He was found guilty on six counts of extortion involving $245,000, one of attempted extortion and another of stealing $300,000 from the complainant, a 47-year-old businesswoman, between 1997 and last year. The court has ordered the press not to publish the name of the woman, a mother of two.

She first met Ang in March 1997 to seek treatment for her ailments.

On her third visit for "treatment" on June 5 that year, he took her to a room in a hotel in Amber Road and gave her a drink which he had mixed with burnt talisman paper.

After taking the drink, she felt giddy and fell asleep. She woke up later to find herself and Ang naked in bed.

He told her that he had sex with her while she was asleep.

Later, by threatening to show her husband photographs of them having sex, he extorted a total of $245,000 from her.

District Judge Yap Siew Yong, who convicted Ang after a 10-day trial, said that he had taken advantage of a gullible and superstitious woman by extorting huge sums of money from her and threatening her with the photographs.

"The complainant was put in perpetual terror of his carrying out the threats should his demands not be met," said the judge.

This form of extortion, she said, was obnoxious to say the least.

Most victims were unwilling to report it, she added, and decent women could even lose their mind and money over it.

She said that a severe sentence was necessary to prevent this form of extortion and to protect the womenfolk.

Ang was sentenced to two years' jail and three strokes on each of two charges of extorting $20,000 on Oct 26 last year and $25,000 from her between Oct 21 and 22 last year by threatening to show incriminating photographs of her to her husband and others.

He was given 30 months and three strokes on each of the four charges of extorting $50,000 from her between last March and Sept 24, and two years and two strokes for attempted extortion in June 1997.

One of the two-year jail terms and two of the 30-month terms will run consecutively. He was also sentenced to a two-year concurrent jail term for stealing a travel bag containing $300,000 from the woman's home, together with an accomplice, Malaysian Toh Yok Chai, 32, in June 1997.

Toh, who was a prosecution witness, is now serving a three-year sentence with five strokes of the cane for the $20,000 extortion charge.

Ang claimed in his defence that he was acting as a middleman for Toh, who had asked him to collect the money.

Defence counsel N. Sreenivasan said in mitigation that his client was supporting his mother, a wife and three school-going children.

Copyright 1999 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved.

About this website


Country files: Singapore

Article: Judicial caning in Singapore

Archive 1999: Singapore

Video clips

Picture index

Previous month

Following month

blob THE ARCHIVE index

blob About this website  Main menu page

Copyright C. Farrell 1999