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Judicial CP - June 1999

Corpun file 3799


Straits Times, Singapore, 17 June 1999

Two who fled after 1995 robbery get jail, cane

The two Malaysians were found guilty of robbing a musician. They escaped to Johor Baru but were arrested this April

A COOK who was short of money decided to rob a musician at the restaurant where they both worked.

So the cook got two other men to help him. One night, they waylaid the musician, assaulted him and took cash and valuables worth $10,300 in total from him.

A district court heard yesterday how the cook, Teo Guan Wee, 28, told Malaysians Lim Chang Shain, 29, an air-conditioner technician, and Ching King Siang, 21, in Johor Baru on Nov 11, 1995 that he had financial problems. Teo suggested robbing Mr Kuah Hock Chye, 45, who was then working at Jade Room Restaurant at Hotel Royal.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Jeanni Eng said the three trailed Mr Kuah in their cars on Nov 13, 1995 and found out he lived at Block 80, Strathmore Avenue.

The next day, Lim, Ching and three others, including Malaysians Goh Ching How, 27, a coffeeshop helper, and Yong Chin Hoong, 22, an air-conditioner technician, left in two Johor-registered cars for Singapore.

They waited at the hotel in Newton Road for Mr Kuah to go off duty, and followed him to a Geylang coffeeshop but then drove off to avoid arousing his suspicions.

But when they returned later on, he had left. So they lay in wait for him at Strathmore Avenue.

When he returned home at about 3 am, one of them grabbed him by the head and covered his mouth with a chloroform-soaked towel to keep him from shouting.

They punched him several times when he struggled, and he collapsed.

Lim and another man held down Mr Kuah's legs while the others took $1,800, a gold bangle, a gold chain, three gold rings, two gold pendants, a cellular phone and a chequebook from him.

Ching, the lookout, suddenly raised the alarm and they fled.

But within about 20 minutes, the police arrested Teo, Goh and Yong on the Bukit Timah Expressway.

Lim and Ching escaped to Johor Baru. The Malaysian police arrested them on April 16 this year following a tip-off, and the pair were escorted back to Singapore three days later.

Yesterday, they admitted robbing Mr Kuah of $10,300 worth of property on Nov 15, 1995, and were each sentenced to the minimum of 36 months' jail and 12 strokes of the cane.

The others were dealt with in 1996.

Lim and Ching could each have been jailed for up to 14 years, and been caned as well.

Copyright 1999 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved.

Corpun file 3938


Straits Times, Singapore, 30 June 1999

Missed death by just 0.11 g

Escape for drug trafficker

A DRUG trafficker missed the hangman's noose by a mere 0.11 g -- about the weight of a fifth of a Panadol tablet -- and was sentenced yesterday to 20 years and six months' jail, and 20 strokes of the cane.

Allan Chua Chuan Heng, 26, escaped the death penalty, but his mother, who had high blood pressure, suffered a heart attack and died, his lawyer said.

A first offender and unemployed, Chua was arrested on Jan 13 this year when narcotics officers found packets of heroin in his rented apartment in Marine Parade.

The drug, which is also known as diamorphine, had been stored inside ice-cream containers, biscuit tins, drawers and envelopes.

A scientific analysis showed that the amount of heroin was 14.89 g, just short of the amount that would have put a noose around Chua's neck.

He would have got the death penalty if he had been caught with more than 15 g of heroin for purposes of trafficking. An hour before his apartment was raided, 19 sachets of drugs were found in a cabinet near his son's bed in the Singapore General Hospital. The four-year-old boy was in hospital to have a harelip operated on.

The haul from the hospital room came to 4.39 g of heroin.

Chua and his wife, Peh Siew Yin, 23, were found in possession of the drugs. Peh was jailed three years in all for drug possession and consumption, and for allowing her husband to smoke heroin in their apartment.

Yesterday, in mitigation, Chua's lawyer, Mr Singa Retnam, said his client came from a broken home and lacked guidance and supervision in his formative years.

The lawyer said that his client's mother became depressed, fearing he would be sentenced to death. When she died from a heart attack, Chua blamed himself for her death and was remorseful.

Copyright 1999 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved.

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