Saturday, 5 Dec 2020

Coronavirus: Two more individuals plead guilty to being part of illegal gathering of 13

SINGAPORE – Two more individuals admitted on Tuesday (Oct 27) to being part of a gathering in June that flouted safe distancing measures amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mohamad Iman Abdul Rahim, 19, and Norsyahmi Norhesham, 21, each pleaded guilty to one count of breaching rules under the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Act by meeting more than four people not living in the same place of residence as themselves.

When sentencing each of them at a later date, Deputy Principal District Judge Seah Chi-Ling will take into consideration one similar charge for flouting safe distancing rules and another charge for drinking in public between 10.30pm and 7am.

On Tuesday, he called for reports to assess if the duo are suitable for probation. They are expected to be back in court on Dec 8.

Iman and Norsyahmi were among a group of 13 who gathered illegally until the wee hours of June 28 at the fitness corner near Block 42 Beo Crescent, off Havelock Road. There were two minors in the group.

As part of phase two of Singapore’s economic reopening, which took effect on June 19, groups of up to five people can meet outside of homes, such as at restaurants for meals. They should practise safe distancing and avoid mixing between different groups.

The court heard that two members of the illegal gathering – Muhammad Zaki Johari, 33, and Mohammad Zack Danial Ahamad Zaki, 20 – planned to have alcoholic drinks on June 27.

Zaki bought two bottles of liquor while three others helped Zack set up portable tables at the fitness corner. The gathering started at around 9pm.

The court heard that all of them, except for the two minors, consumed alcohol there. The gathering was so noisy that it kept a resident in a nearby flat awake. He alerted the police shortly before 1am. The gathering ended soon after an officer arrived.

Eight people were dealt with earlier for their participation in the gathering.

Zaki and three others – Nur Saliza Mohamed Sani, 23, Nurul Sheilla Natasya Suhaimi, 25, and Nuraznie Ithnin, 31 – were each fined $4,000. Zack and Aqlima Abdul Azmi, 19, were each fined $3,000.

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Sai Raghu Vaishnavee Ragu, 19, was sentenced to a year’s probation, while the youngest member of the group, a 14-year-old boy, was given a conditional warning.

The cases for three people are pending. They are 20-year-old Remy Shah Hail Mee, a 26-year-old Malaysian man and a 15-year-old boy.

For each charge under the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Act, a first-time offender can be jailed for up to six months and fined up to $10,000.

A repeat offender can be jailed for up to a year and fined up to $20,000.

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