China couple accused of obstructing COVID-19 containment work set for a trial, lawyer discharged
SINGAPORE: A married couple from China is set to go to trial over charges of obstructing COVID-19 containment work, and have discharged their initial lawyer.
China nationals Hu Jun, 38, and his wife Shi Sha, 36, are set to go to trial on Aug 17, according to their court records.
They were charged in late February, with Wuhan native Hu facing one count of obstructing contact tracing.
His wife, who lives in Singapore, was given three charges of obstructing health officials' work and another charge of failing to comply with isolation conditions.
Hu had arrived in Singapore on Jan 22 and was confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 on Jan 31, but is accused of giving false information to a health officer about where he stayed between Jan 22 and Jan 29.
Shi was given a quarantine order on Feb 1 after her husband's positive diagnosis, but is accused of not complying with it, staying at a hotel instead of her residence.
Hu fully recovered from the infection and was discharged from hospital on Feb 19, turning up in court to receive the charges on Feb 28.
The couple was represented by lawyer Chung Ting Fai at the charging, but Mr Chung told CNA on Monday (Jun 22) that he has been discharged.
Another law firm is taking up the case, said Mr Chung.
READ: China couple accused of obstructing COVID-19 containment work 'not averse' to pleading guilty: Lawyer
Hu and Shi were among the first to be charged in relation to COVID-19, and have been returning to court for pre-trial conferences.
At the time they were charged, there were just under 100 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Singapore. The total figure now stands at more than 42,000.
If convicted of the offences, both husband and wife face penalties of up to six months' jail, a maximum S$10,000 fine or both, per charge.