Increasing littering in high-rise neighhourhood might cause adjustment in service & conservancy charges

Residents may end up paying more in service and conservancy charges if the problem of high-rise littering gets worse.

This possibility was raised by Parliamentary Secretary for National Development Dr Maliki Osman when he launched an anti-litter initiative in Admiralty on Sunday.

Grassroots organisations will be using community pressure, like roping in residents to keep a lookout for those who litter from their flats.

The number of complaints against high-rise littering island-wide has been increasing over the last few years.

In 2008, there were 2,499 complaints.

This jumped to 3,474 complaints last year.

In the first half of this year, there have been 1,965 complaints.

Dr Maliki said: “When we have a littering problem and we have a cleanliness problem, the conservancy costs will go up because the workers will have to come in more regularly.

“That would increase the cost because from a normal cleaning situation where you just clean the common corridors and the lift lobbies, now you have to go into the individual households to try and clean it.

“This is unnecessary for the residents because the higher the cost, it will be transferred to the residents. We do not want that to happen.

“We want them to try and minimise the need for them to pay extra just because of irresponsible behaviour. At this point in time, we have not raised the conservancy charges at all because we have been able to manage, but I think we can continue to contain it even better if residents take responsibility.

“The chances of increasing costs will be there if we do not contain this, because the idea is to look at the natural situation where previously you will not need workers to go into individual households.

“Now, (in) one HDB block, you have an average of 100 units. Just imagine if half of that required cleaning. The costs will tremendously increase.

“If we do not need that, then we can actually reduce the cost and maintain the cleanliness at the common corridors spaces and common area, and we really do not need to increase costs if everybody is responsible.”

Source: Channelnewasia

Mobile phone manager pleaded guilty to tax evasion

A manager of a company dealing in mobile phones has pleaded guilty to 11 tax evasion charges amounting to more than S$5 million.

Forty-three-year-old Mahesh Sukhram Daswani from Sadhashiv Enterprises assisted his father, Sukhram Parsram Daswani, who is also the sole-proprietor of the company, in evading taxes amounting to more than S$400,000 from January to February 2004.

He also assisted the company and a man identified as Shyam Lekhraj Bhojwani in evading more taxes between February and August that year.

The younger Daswani will be sentenced on July 30.

For committing the offences, he would have to pay three times the amount of tax that had been undercharged – a grand total of more than S$17 million.

He is also liable to a jail sentence of up to seven years, a maximum fine of S$10,000, or both.

Source: Channelnewasia

52 caught with illegal betting in Singapore on recent World Cup

Police have arrested 52 suspects in Singapore as part of an Interpol-coordinated crackdown in the region on illegal football betting during the recently-concluded World Cup.

In all, over 5,000 people across Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Hong Kong and Macau were arrested, and US$10 million seized in the month-long sting targeted at gambling linked to organised crime, Interpol said on Friday.

In the crackdown, cops raided nearly 800 illegal gambling dens that dealt with bets of more than US$155 million from June 11 to July 11, the Lyon-based organisation said in a statement.

In Singapore, the estimated value of the illegal bets collected was over S$1.6 million, police said.

Superintendent Goh Lam Kiong, who is assistant director of the Specialised Crime Division in the Criminal Investigation Department, said: “These series of operations show that we are serious about clamping down illegal gambling activities.

“We will come down hard on subjects regardless of whether they are individuals betting illegally, or are part of a syndicate collecting illegal bets.”

He added that the police’s enforcement actions will continue even though the World Cup is over.

Interpol’s executive director for police services, Mr Jean-Michel Louboutin, said: “As well as having clear connections to organised crime gangs, illegal soccer gambling is also linked with corruption, money laundering and prostitution.”

The operation “will have a significant long-term impact on these serious offences as well,” he said.

Police also confiscated cars, bank cards, computers and cell phones, and the materials “will now be reviewed and analysed to determine the potential involvement of other individuals or gangs across the region and beyond,” Interpol said.

Under the law, punters who place bets with bookmakers face fines of up to S$5,000 and/or jail of up to six months upon conviction.

Anyone found guilty of being involved in bookmaking face fines of between S$20,000 and S$200,000, and a mandatory jail-term not exceeding five years.

Source: Channelnewasia

32,000 flat owners sublet their flats as of end June

Some 32,000 flat owners have registered their subletting of rooms with HDB as of end June.

HDB has also issued a reminder to those whose tenancies started before February, that their six months grace period for registration will end at the end of this month.

Those who sublet from February 1 are required to register with HDB within seven days from the start date of the subletting.

Flat owners are also required to notify HDB when they renew or terminate their subletting contracts, and when there are changes to their subtenants’ particulars.

There’s however no need to seek prior approval for subletting of rooms.

HDB says this requirement supports the Home Affairs Ministry’s ongoing efforts to eradicate loansharking activities, and to better protect residents.

The housing board says it may impose a penalty on those who flout the rule.

The penalty may involve a fine of up to $3,000 or for recalcitrant cases, compulsory acquisition of their flats.

Source: Channelnewasia, 14th July 2010

Court ordered man to pay victim S$1,000 for a punch.

A man who was fined $3,500 for punching another man was ordered by the High Court to pay the victim $1,000 in compensation Thursday.

On July 5 last year, 56-year-old Lau Weng Kee was slapping his nine-year-old daughter at Serangoon bus interchange because she had poured water on his pants.

As he was slapping the girl, 51-year-old Abdul Hamid Hassan intervened and asked Lau to stop hitting his daughter.

Lau told Mr Abdul Hamid to mind his own business and punched his nose.

Mr Abdul Hamid pushed Lau away to defend himself, causing him to fall.

The two men then stopped and waited for the police to arrive.

Lau was fined but the prosecution appealed for a heavier sentence Thursday.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Gillian Koh told the court that Lau was a violent offender who would turn violent towards his child and towards members of the public.

Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong said that what concerned him was if Lau had compensated the victim.

He ordered Lau to pay Mr Abdul Hamid $1,000 in compensation and did not increase his sentence.

Man charged with having sex with underaged girl

A 28-year-old man has been charged with three counts of engaging the services of an underaged freelance sex worker.

Bhadrul Zaman Hashim allegedly gave S$50 to the 15-year-old girl in April last year and had sex with her in a room at Summer Hotel on Lorong 22 Geylang.

It’s believed he engaged her services again in September and October last year.
He is now out on a S$15,000 bail and he will appear again in court next Wednesday.

If convicted, he could be jailed up to seven years, fined or both.

Source: Channelnewasia, 14th July 2010

18-year old Malaysia fined S$3,000 for stealing.

An 18-year-old Malaysian was fined S$3,000 for stealing S$7,400 worth of items from the Marina Bay Sands casino in May.

Tey Chin Wei, who was working in Singapore as a hairstylist, went to the casino to gamble on the afternoon of May 1.

He lost almost all the money he had brought with him.

At 2.15am the next day, when he was at the roulette section, he noticed a woman placing her branded handbag behind her on the seat of her chair.

Tey decided to steal it.

He walked to the male toilet with the handbag and took S$600 cash, S$600 worth of gambling chips and an iPhone worth S$1,200 from it.

Tey left the S$5,000 handbag in the toilet.

He was stopped by a security officer who checked on his identification and age when he returned to the casino.

Tey was escorted out of the casino when it was found out that he was underaged.

That is when the woman noticed her missing handbag and reported it to the casino.

Tey was arrested later that day.

Source: Channelnewasia, 14th July 2010

Unemployed father killed his two-monh-old daughter, sentenced to 2 years jail

An unemployed man has been sentenced to two years’ jail for causing the death of his two-month-old daughter by forcefully rocking her for about 10 to 15 minutes.

This happened on 10 June 2009 in a rented flat near Havelock Road sometime after 9pm.

The Court heard that the 30-year-old man rocked the infant “forcefully” as he was “frustrated” that she was crying and would not go to sleep.

The man’s 23-year-old wife came home from work at around 7am the next day and noticed that her baby was “behaving strangely” when she tried to feed her a bottle of milk.

The baby was brought to hospital soon afterwards, and died in the Children’s Intensive Care Unit of KK Hospital a week later at around 8am on June 17.

A medical report from KKH revealed that the infant suffered injuries including haemorrhage in the brain and eyes.

It stated that these were most likely caused by a condition known as the “shaken baby syndrome”.

In mitigation, the man’s lawyer, S Balamurugan told the court that his client “did not set out to hurt” the infant and that he “only wanted” her to fall asleep.

Mr Balamurugan added that the man has “always been” a loving father towards his children.

He resorted to carrying the infant and rocking her to sleep as he could not “afford a baby cradle swing.”

The man had also rocked his older child in a similar manner on previous occasions “without any adverse consequences”.

The man has another daughter who is now two years old.

Speaking to reporters after the hearing, the man’s wife said that she hopes the man will “turn over a new leaf” when he is released from prison.

When queried if she has forgiven her husband, she said that it was a “very difficult question” to answer and that she has to “move on with her life”.

She also asked reporters not to reveal her name as well as those of her family members.

For committing the crime, the man could have been sentenced to up to five years’ jail, fined, or both.

Source: Channelnewasia, 12th July 2010