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Man jailed for stealing Saudi Arabia flag from embassy, assaulting his 81-year-old grandmother

Man jailed for stealing Saudi Arabia flag from embassy, assaulting his 81-year-old grandmother

Screengrab from Google Street View of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia.

SINGAPORE: A man who has been in and out of jail since 2005 was sentenced to jail again on Wednesday (Oct 27) for stealing a flag from outside the Saudi Arabian embassy and assaulting his 81-year-old grandmother who had dementia.

Mohammad Halimun Mohammad Shaifful, 33, was given 11 months' jail. He pleaded guilty to three charges of theft and voluntarily causing hurt to a vulnerable person, with another two charges taken into consideration.

On Jun 16 this year, Halimun was home with his grandmother, his father and the family's domestic helper when he went to the kitchen to prepare food.

His grandmother, who suffered from dementia and required a walking stick to get around, went to the kitchen intending to head for the toilet. She stood in front of the toilet door, which was right behind Halimun.

Halimun suddenly turned around, kicked his grandmother on her hip and slapped her cheek. The elderly woman shouted out in pain and the maid called out for help.

Halimun's father was taking a nap in the living room and ran into the kitchen where the maid told him what happened. Worried for the victim and the family, he asked his son to leave and the family did not allow him to return home.

Halimun's sister called the police that same day, and the victim was later taken to seek medical attention. She was prescribed painkillers for a chest contusion.

On Jul 31, Halimun stole a bottle of Pokka Honey Lemon from a supermarket at Peace Centre. An employee at the store called the police saying he had stolen twice but the workers there were all female and "scared to approach him".

At 12.30am on Aug 1, Halimun detached the Saudi Arabia flag from its flagpole outside the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia and took it with him.

Two days later, embassy staff called the police saying their national flag was missing, and Halimun was identified through closed-circuit television footage.

He was arrested four days after the theft and the flag was found in his bag. Halimun has been in remand since then.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Seah Ee Wei asked for nine to 12 months' jail, listing Halimun's long string of past convictions beginning with being a member of an unlawful assembly in 2005.

He was convicted multiple times over the years for offences such as criminal breach of trust, housebreaking, criminal intimidation and theft, and was in a drug rehabilitation centre multiple times for drug-related offences.

His latest conviction was in September 2020, where he was jailed for stealing items including a phone.

Ms Seah said Halimun had reoffended within half a year of his latest release from jail, and has previous violent convictions.

Halimun, who was unrepresented, did not say anything in mitigation. He did not give any reason for his thefts nor his assault on his grandmother.

Source: CNA/ll


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