SINGAPORE: An IT company manager who was caught on video assaulting an intern has been sentenced to a 10-day detention in prison.
Lee Yew Nam had previously pleaded guilty to four counts of causing hurt to an intern by slapping and punching him, but claimed to be suffering from a depressive disorder which had “substantially impaired” his ability to “control his impulses”.
The abuse, which took place over about three years, came to light when another intern secretly filmed Lee slapping Mr Calvin Chan Meng Hock in May 2013. The video was posted to YouTube and went viral.
In court on Friday (Apr 1), District Judge Lim Tse Haw called the assault “brutish behavior” that “has no place in our civilised society”.
While the judge accepted that Lee suffered from “some form of depressive disorder”, he noted that Lee had not been entirely truthful with psychiatrists.
Lee sought psychiatric treatment more than six months after the May 2013 assault, and after the footage had gone viral online. If Lee had been “genuinely concerned” about his violent behavior and depression, he should have sought help sooner, Judge Lim said.
The judge added that a strong message must be conveyed to employers – that no matter how low an employee’s position in the company is, he is an "important member of the company and not a punching bag”.
For causing hurt, Lee could have faced up to two years’ jail and a fine.