SINGAPORE: A total of 21 men were arrested during a month-long police operation on suspicion of being members of unlawful societies.
The suspects, aged between 17 and 60, were caught during checks on close to 60 public entertainment and nightlife establishments, as well as food and beverage outlets.
If found guilty of being a member of an unlawful society, offenders can be jailed for up to three years, fined up to S$5,000, or both.
Another three men were arrested for other offences, including the possession of vape devices, during the operation from Nov 4 to 30.
One of them, aged 32, was allegedly found with a truncheon and three vape devices along Claymore Drive, said the police in a media release on Saturday (Dec 3).
They added that he was also wanted for failing to return to an approved institution under the Misuse of Drug regulations.
A 34-year-old man was allegedly found in possession of a karambit along Aliwal Street. He was arrested for consuming controlled drugs, as well as for carrying an offensive weapon in public.
In another case, a 33-year-old man was allegedly found to have a vape device, an assortment of loose pills and a bottle of cough syrup, said the police. He was arrested for the consumption of controlled drugs, the possession of a vape device and poisons.
He was also wanted for theft.
Police said investigations against all 24 men are ongoing.
"The police will continue to work closely with relevant stakeholders to conduct regular anti-crime and secret society suppression operations at various public entertainment and nightlife establishments, and popular congregation hotspots during the upcoming year-end festive season," said the Singapore Police Force."
"Firm action will be taken against anyone who chooses to associate with secret societies and blatantly disregard the law."