Probation for foreign student who fought NEA officers over smoking in Geylang gaming shop

Probation for foreign student who fought NEA officers over smoking in Geylang gaming shop

file photo of smoking
File photo of a person smoking. (Photo: AFP)

SINGAPORE: He was smoking in a Geylang local area network (LAN) gaming shop on Jun 20, 2017 when he spotted National Environment Agency (NEA) officers approaching him.

Ditching the lit cigarette, 19-year-old Wei Sining resisted when asked for his particulars and pushed one of the officers, elbowing him in the chest in order to escape.

Wei, a student from China, rushed to the window on the second floor of the One Internet Cafe and tried to flee, but was pulled back and subdued by the two officers.

During the struggle, he said "you piece of shit" and shouted in Mandarin: "Your mother has died ah."

Wei was sentenced to two years' probation on Chinese New Year eve (Feb 4), and has to perform 120 hours of community service and be placed on an electronic monitoring scheme.

Foreigners do not usually get sentenced to probation, but the prosecution revised its position against probation after reviewing probation reports that showed Wei had some roots in Singapore.

He has lived in the country with his Chinese mother and Singaporean stepfather since 2014, and has also been offered a place in the Institute of Technical Education to study urban greenery and landscaping.

When sentencing him, District Judge Terence Tay addressed Wei sharply, noting how he had run away from home to a LAN shop as he had been angry with his mother.

Asked by the judge to explain how he intends to improve, Wei said through a Mandarin interpreter: "I am remorseful for what I've done previously. From now on, I will attend school punctually and I will come back home punctually."

He said he hoped for a chance to reform himself and said he had been "quite immature" but has since reflected on matters and now knows what to do.

Wei's lawyer Ryan Yu pointed out that this was his client's first brush with the law. He added that Wei came from a "broken family" and his mother "had no alternative but to fight for the family's survival and ruled with an iron fist".

Though born in China, Wei came to Singapore after his mother married a Singaporean in 2013. He enrolled into Outram Secondary School a year later, graduating at the age of 19 in 2016.

His passport has been retained by the police and he has not been able to renew his Long-Term Visit Pass.

His parents each furnished a bond of S$5,000 to ensure their son's good behaviour.

For insulting a public servant, he could have been jailed for up to a year, fined up to S$5,000, or both.

For using criminal force on a public servant, he could have been jailed for up to four years.

Source: CNA/ll(mn)

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