SINGAPORE: A 52-year-old man who stole S$356 worth of sex toys from a shop in Chinatown was sentenced to a week's jail on Tuesday (Jul 24).
Tan Swee Peng visited the Casanova adult toy shop at 84 Pagoda Street on Jul 22 in 2017.
He was in the store at about 8.30pm browsing the shelves. After checking that none of the shop staff were looking at him, Tan angled his body away from the payment counter and placed one item into a plastic bag he had brought with him, following up with two more items.
He later admitted to choosing items which were not in the view of the shop staff.
Tan left the store with the three items: A vibrating ring with nipple clamps worth S$149, a nipple vibrator worth S$89 and another sex toy worth S$118.
His acts were caught on closed-circuit television footage.
Tan returned to the shop the next day and was recognised by a sales assistant, who had seen him in the CCTV footage.
She called the police, who arrested him and subsequently recovered the stolen items.
Tan pleaded guilty to one charge of theft in dwelling, with another charge taken into consideration.
The prosecution on Tuesday asked for a sentence of four weeks' jail, saying that Tan was convicted of theft just two years ago in 2016.
However, Tan's lawyer Shaneet Rai said that Tan is divorced and lives with his older brother and elderly mother.
He was unemployed at that time and has been seeking treatment at the Institute of Mental Health since 2014 for panic disorder, Mr Rai said.
He was remanded for theft in 2016 and diagnosed with obsessive compulsive personality traits.
On the day of the offence, Tan had suffered a panic attack as a result of his family nagging him about his unemployment, Mr Rai said.
Thus, he went for a walk to calm himself down and passed by the sex shop. He entered out of curiosity and committed the offence.
Asking for no more than two to three weeks' jail, Mr Rai said that Tan has found gainful employment as a part-time printing assistant at a school and continues to seek treatment for his mental illness.
District Judge Eddy Tham said that such a panic attack would not cause Tan to act involuntarily.
"I trust that you will respond well to counselling," said the judge to Tan. "I will impose a short custodial sentence of one week's imprisonment. I trust that this will be sufficient as a wake-up call to you."
For committing theft in dwelling, Tan could have been jailed for up to seven years and fined.