Man jailed for spitting at prisons officer in court

Man jailed for spitting at prisons officer in court

State Courts of Singapore
File photo of State Courts. (Photo: Xabryna Kek)

SINGAPORE: A man who was previously jailed for spitting on a police officer received another term of imprisonment on Tuesday (Nov 12) for spitting at a prisons officer in the State Courts.

Moo Chee Kien, 48, was sentenced to nine months' jail and an additional enhanced sentence of 43 days' jail for using criminal force to deter a public servant, and for failing to give a blood specimen for a test.

The court heard that Moo was arrested in Redhill Lane on Sep 22 this year on suspicion of inhalant abuse. 

He was searched and a plastic bag was found on him with glue in it, which Moo admitted that he had sniffed.

Because he had several cuts on his forehead, Moo was taken to Singapore General Hospital where a police officer asked him to give a blood specimen for a laboratory test.

Despite being warned that he could be fined or jailed for failing to give a blood specimen, Moo refused to supply the sample.

He was taken to Court 23 at the State Courts in Chinatown two days after his arrest to be charged for refusing to give his blood specimen.

During the hearing, he was ordered to be remanded in the Institute of Mental Health for psychiatric evaluation, and held in the holding bay while waiting for hearings to be completed.

While in the bay, Moo began playing with his shackles, making loud metallic noises which disrupted court proceedings, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Foo Shi Hao.

A prisons officer employed by the Singapore Prisons Services entered the holding bay and asked Moo to keep quiet.

He obeyed at first, but continued playing with his shackles and making loud noises a while later.

The officer returned to the holding bay and stood in front of Moo, intending to ask him to stop playing with his shackles.

An auxiliary police officer also asked Moo to stop playing with the shackles, but he shouted: "I don't want."

He then spit saliva on the prisons officer's face.

The prosecution asked for 10 months and 50 days' jail, pointing out a long list of offences Moo had previously been convicted of, including using or inhaling intoxicating substances from 2000, and failing to provide blood specimens from 2004.

He added that Moo had re-offended within six days of his conditional release for a previous offence.

He had been sentenced to 20 weeks' jail for spitting at a police officer.

The judge referred to a psychiatric report, noting that Moo had become homeless in September this year, as he was locked out of his rental flat after failing to pay rent.

Clarification: A previous version of this article said Moo became homeless after release from prison and that he had been locked out of his rental flat for failing to pay rent. This information was presented by the prosecution. HDB has since clarified that police had secured the gate to prevent unauthorised entry when they found the door and gate left open, and left a note for occupiers to contact them. HDB added that its records show the rental had been paid punctually, and said it does not lock up rental flats of tenants who are in arrears.

Source: CNA/ll(mn)

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