SINGAPORE: A graduation ceremony for a polytechnic student turned ugly after another man turned up to meet the graduate's ex-girlfriend, escalating into a scuffle.
Two other men later joined in and assaulted the victim, who sustained swollen lips, a bleeding eyelid and multiple bruises.
For one charge of using criminal force on the victim, 22-year-old Lee Qi Xiang was on Monday (Jul 27) sentenced to 15 months' probation.
He will also have to perform 60 hours of community service, and his mother put up a bond of S$5,000 to ensure his good behaviour.
The court heard that Lee, then 21, was at Ngee Ann Polytechnic on May 3 last year for his graduation ceremony.
His ex-girlfriend Nicole Lum Chee Yi was also at the polytechnic, waiting for Lee's graduation ceremony to end.
The victim, 21-year-old Tan Kah Lock, had gone to the school to meet Ms Lum. When she told him that the ceremony had ended, Mr Tan walked over to meet her.
While Mr Tan was on his way, Lee spotted him and walked towards him. He confronted Mr Tan and questioned him on why he was there with Ms Lum.
A dispute broke out between the two men, and Ms Lum intervened and asked Mr Tan to leave.
While Mr Tan was walking up the slope towards his motorcycle at Block 72 in Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Lee approached him from behind and pushed him.
He said he was unhappy about the earlier issues and confronted him. He pushed Mr Tan twice in his chest area.
At this time, two other men - 19-year-old Lim Hao Liang and 22-year-old Sim Aik Sin - came forward and began assaulting Mr Tan.
Their relations to the accused were not specified in court documents, but they did not know Mr Tan.
Sim punched Mr Tan twice on his face until he fell to the floor, and Lim kicked Mr Tan's face while he was on the ground.
Sim and Lim then left the location, while Lee helped Mr Tan up and waited for the police to arrive.
A paramedic at the scene observed that Mr Tan had swollen lips and a cut on his right eyelid, which was bleeding. However, Mr Tan did not want to go to hospital immediately, heading to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital for medical treatment only a day later.
A medical report noted several injuries sustained by Mr Tan, including bruises on his arm, abdomen and eye, laceration over his eyebrow and scratch marks over his face and abdominal area.
Lee later admitted to pushing Mr Tan from behind to get his attention and pushing him during the confrontation because he was angry with him.
The victim said he felt alarmed by these actions.
The cases of the two co-accused are being dealt with separately. Lim pleaded guilty to voluntarily causing hurt and was given 15 months' probation last month.
For using criminal force, Lee could have been jailed for up to three months, fined up to S$1,500, or both.