Public Prosecutor v Ravindran S/O B Rasmi

CourtDistrict Court (Singapore)
JudgeLow Wee Ping
Judgment Date02 July 2015
Neutral Citation[2015] SGDC 183
Citation[2015] SGDC 183
Docket NumberDAC 908254/2015 and 25 others, Magistrate’s Appeal Number—9103/2015/01
Publication Date02 November 2015
Plaintiff CounselDPP Ms Claire Poh
Defendant CounselMr Ram Goswami
District Judge Low Wee Ping: The accused

Ravindran S/O B Rasmi (“the accused”) is 44 years old. He is a Singapore Citizen. He is single. He “dropped out of school while in Primary 6”. He was “working as an office boy”. The accused was represented by a defence counsel, Mr Ram Goswami.

The accused pleaded guilty to seven (7) charges. Four (4) charges were under the Misuse of Drugs Act (Cap 185) (“MDA”). Three (3) charges were under the Criminal Law (Temporary Provisions) Act (Cap 67, Rev Ed 2000) (“CLTPA”). Eighteen (18) charges were taken into consideration for purpose of sentencing (“TIC”). One (1) charge under the MDA was withdrawn.

Table

The following table gives an overview, of the charges the accused pleaded guilty to, and the mandatory minimum sentences imposed:-

DAC No. Offence Sentence Order
1 908254-15 13th Charge S 8(b)(ii) p/u s 33A(1) MDA Consumption 5 years' imprisonment and 3 strokes of the cane. (Minimum) Concurrent
2 911362-14 21st Charge S 33(1)(b)(vi) p/u s 33(3) CLTPA Failed to remain indoor 1 year's imprisonment. (Minimum) Consecutive
3 911364-14 23rd Charge S 33(1)(b)(v) p/u s 33(3) CLTPA Failed to report 1 year's imprisonment. (Minimum) Concurrent
4 914507-14 25th Charge S 33(1)(b)(vi) p/u s 33(3) CLTPA Failed to remain indoor 1 year's imprisonment. (Minimum) Concurrent
5 926852-14 2nd Charge S 8(b)(ii) p/u s 33A(1) MDA Consumption 5 years' imprisonment and 3 strokes of the cane. (Minimum) Consecutive
6 926854-14 4th Charge S 8(a) p/u s 33(1) MDA Possession 2 years' imprisonment. (Minimum) Consecutive
7 930856-14 8th Charge S 8(a) p/u s 33(1) MDA Possession 2 years' imprisonment. (Minimum) Concurrent
The total sentence

As shown in the above table, in all the seven charges, the accused was sentenced to the mandatory minimum sentence. Three sentences – in the 2nd, 4th and 21st charge – were ordered to run consecutively. The total sentence, therefore, was 8 years’ imprisonment and 6 strokes of the cane.

The accused’s appeal

The accused has filed a notice of appeal against the sentences imposed. The accused, obviously, cannot be dissatisfied with the individual mandatory minimum sentences imposed. He must, therefore, only be dissatisfied because this court has ordered that three (3) of the above mandatory minimum sentences are to run consecutively. I now give the reasons for my decision.

The facts

The accused admitted to a detailed statement of facts (PS1). The statement of facts has been edited as follows:- The accused is Ravindran S/O B Rasmi, Male/44yrs, bearer of NRIC: [XXX], D.O.B: 04.08.1970, a Singaporean and was working as an office boy. At the material time, the accused was staying at Blk 47 Owen Road #07-235. FACTS PERTAINING TO ARREST ON 19 AUGUST 2014 (2ND CHARGE-DAC 926852-2014, 4TH CHARGE-DAC-926854-2014 AND 6TH CHARGE-DAC 926856-2014) On the 19 August 2014 at about 6.00 pm at Blk 47 Owen Road #07-235, Singapore, the accused was arrested by a party of CNB officers. A search was conducted in the unit and the following items were recovered and seized from the accused’s possession: One straw containing crystallised substance believed to be controlled drug (later marked as ‘RAV-6’); One packet containing crystallised substance believed to be controlled drug (later marked as ‘RAV-7’); One packet containing crystallised substance believed to be controlled drug (later marked as ‘RAV-8’). The accused was subsequently brought back to Bedok Police Divisional Headquarters and referred to Police Cantonment Complex, CNB Office for further investigation. FACTS PERTAINING TO THE 2ND CHARGE ON CONSUMPTION OF METHAMPHETAMINE SEC 8(b)(ii) MDA CAP 185 (LT-1 & DAC-926852-2014) Following his arrest, on the 19 August 2014 at or about 8.10pm, the accused provided two bottles of his urine samples which were sealed… and marked… in his presence. The said urine samples were sent to the Health Sciences Authority (“HSA”) on the 20 August 2014 for analysis. On the 3 September 2014, HSA analyst Zhang Huifen Hannah issued a certificate under Section 16 of the MDA… stating that the urine sample… was analysed and found to contain methamphetamine. On the 2 September 2014, HSA analyst Ong Han Hui Jordan issued a certificate under Section 16 of the MDA… stating that the urine sample… was analysed and found to contain methamphetamine. Methamphetamine is a Specified Drug listed in the Fourth Schedule to the MDA During the course of investigations, the accused admitted to consuming ‘ice’. ‘Ice’ is the street name for Methamphetamine. His last consumption was on the day of his arrest at about 11 am in his house. The accused admitted that he had consumed ‘Ice’ by scooping some ‘ice’ from a plastic packet using a cut straw and putting the ‘ice’ into the opening of an improvised glass pipe. He then heated the underneath of the glass pipe with a lighter. The accused then quickly inhaled the fumes emitted using a straw. The accused’s urine samples (referred to in para. 5 and 6) were found to contain methamphetamine as a result of the accused consuming ‘ice’. The accused is not authorized under the MDA or the Regulations made thereunder to consume methamphetamine, which is a Specified Drug. The (accused) has thereby committed an offence under Sec 8(b)(ii) of the said Act. Investigations further revealed that prior to the commission of the said offence, the accused was on the 21st day of August 1998, pursuant to an order made by the Director of the Central Narcotics Bureau in Singapore under s 37(2)(b) of the MDA, admitted to an approved institution, namely, Sembawang Drug Rehabilitation Centre, for the consumption of a specified drug, to wit, morphine, and was on 19th day of September 2003, pursuant to an order made by the Director of the Central Narcotics Bureau in Singapore under s 34(2)(b) of the MDA, admitted to an approved institution, namely, Sembawang Drug Rehabilitation Centre, for the consumption of a specified drug, to wit, morphine, which are both previous admissions by virtue of s 33A(5)(c)(ii) of the MDA, and the accused shall now be punished under s 33A(1) of the MDA. FACTS PERTAINING TO THE 4TH CHARGE OF POSSESSION OF METHAMPHETAMINE ENHANCED SEC 8(a) MDA CAP 185 (DAC-926854-2014) The accused admitted ownership and possession of the exhibit marked ‘RAV-6’, ‘RAV-7’ and ‘RAV-8’. The accused claimed that they were for his own consumption. The said exhibits were sent to HSA on the 25th day of August 2014 for analysis. On the 19th day of September 2014, HSA analyst Joey Ng Joo Yee issued two certificates under Section 16 of the MDA. The first certificate… states that the exhibit marked ‘RAV-6’ was found to be one straw containing not less than 0.18 gram of crystalline substance which was analysed and found to contain not less than 0.11 gram of methamphetamine. The second certificate… states that the exhibit marked ‘RAV-7’ was found to be one packet containing not less than 0.16 gram of crystalline substance which was analysed and found to contain not less than 0.10 gram of methamphetamine. On the 19th day of September 2014, HSA analyst Goh Jia Hui issued a certificate under Section 16 of the MDA… stating that the exhibit marked ‘RAV-8’ was found to be one packet containing not less than 3.01 grams of wet substance. The substance was dried to constant weight and it weighed not less than 2.18 grams of powdery substance was analysed and found to contain not less than 0.01 gram of methamphetamine. In total, the accused had in his possession, two packets and one straw containing not less than 2.52 grams of crystalline/ powdery substance which were analysed and found to contain not less than 0.22 gram of methamphetamine. Methamphetamine is a Class A Controlled Drug listed in the First Schedule to the MDA. The accused is not authorized under the MDA or the Regulations made thereunder to possess methamphetamine, which is a controlled drug listed in the First Schedule to the MDA, and he has thereby committed an offence under Sec 8(a) of the said Act. Investigations further revealed that prior to the commission of the said offence, the accused was on the 4th day of December 1998 in the Subordinate Court 24 vide DAC34757/98, convicted for the offence of possession of a controlled drug, to wit, cannabis, under Sec 8(a) of the MDA and sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment, which conviction has not been set aside, and he is now liable for enhanced punishment under Sec 33(1) of the MDA. FACTS PERTAINING TO ARREST ON 10 TH DECEMBER 2014 (8TH CHARGE DAC-930856-2014 AND 13TH CHARGE- DAC 908254-2015) On the 10th day of December 2014 at about 8.15 pm, at 47 Owen Road #07-235, Singapore, the accused was arrested by a party of CNB officers. A search was conducted in the unit and the following items were recovered:- One ‘Van Houten’ container containing one packet containing brown granular/ powdery substances (later marked as ‘R-2E’); One ‘Holy Bible’ safe box containing one white plastic bag containing seven packets of brown granular/powdery substance (later marked as ‘R-3A1’). The accused was subsequently brought back to Tanglin Police Divisional Headquarters and referred to Police Cantonment Complex, CNB Office for further investigation.

A. FACTS PERTAINING TO THE 8TH CHARGE OF POSSESSION OF DIAMORPHINE ENHANCED SEC 8(a) MDA CAP 185 (DAC-930856-2014)

The accused admitted ownership and possession of the exhibit marked ‘R-2E’, and ‘R-3A1’, and claimed that they were for his own consumption. During the course of investigations, the accused claimed that he had bought a total of eight packets of ‘Heroin’ from an Indian lady known to him as ‘Nisha’...

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