Public Prosecutor v Sundaraju s/o Munusamy

CourtMagistrates' Court (Singapore)
JudgeGilbert Low Teik Seang
Judgment Date26 April 2002
Neutral Citation[2002] SGMC 8
Citation[2002] SGMC 8
Published date19 September 2003

Judgment

GROUNDS OF DECISION

1. The accused claimed trial to the following charge in MAC 9500/2001 (P1)

"You … are charged that you on the 19th day of August 2001 at or about 3.14 am, along Perak Road, Singapore, which is a public place, was found armed with a dangerous instrument, to wit, a 15 cm long screwdriver without lawful purpose and you have thereby committed an offence, punishable under Section 22(1)(a) of the Miscellaneous Offences (Public Order and Nuisance) Act, Chapter 184."

2. At the end of the prosecution’s case, I acquitted the accused without calling for his defence. Being dissatisfied with my decision, the prosecution appealed. I now give the reasons for my decision.


PROSECUTION'S CASE

Evidence of Sergeant Ahmad Rithaudeen bin Mohamed (PW2)

3. In the early hours of 19 August 2001 at about 3 am, Sergeant Ahmad Rithaudeen bin Mohamed ("Sgt Ahmad") was on police patrol car duty with his colleague, Corporal Jeffrey Ang Zhilong ("Cpl Ang") when they received a message to proceed to Dunlop Road where a group of foreigners were fighting. Upon arrival at Dunlop Street, Sgt Ahmad saw a group of Indian men gathered at the junction of Perak Road with Mayo Street. As Sgt Ahmad came from Perak Road, he parked the police car near to a coffee-shop along the stretch which was after the junction with Dunlop Street. It appeared to Sgt Ahmad that the crowd whom he saw was having an argument. Upon seeing his patrol car, the crowd started to disperse.

4. Sgt Ahmad then saw another group of male Indians whom he was not sure whether they were from the earlier group that dispersed, walking along the middle of Perak Road. He then decided to proceed to check on this second group of Indians and started to walk behind them. When he was about 5 metres behind them, he saw one of them, ascertained to be the accused, drop a black coloured object to the right side resulting in the object being stuck at the latter’s trousers. The accused was then seen trying to shake off the object. Sgt Ahmad quickly went up to him and told him to stop. The accused walked away without bothering to turn around. Sgt Ahmad then managed to get hold of him and questioned him about the object which had by then fallen onto the ground. The accused denied that the object (ascertained to be a 15 cm long screwdriver) was his. By then, Sgt Ahmad had allowed the group whom the accused was seen with to walk away. The accused was screened on the spot and was found to be on the wanted list and was arrested. He was subsequently charged under the present charge for having been found armed with the 15 cm screwdriver at that time.


Evidence of Corporal Jeffrey Ang Zhilong (PW3)

5. Cpl Ang confirmed that he was on police patrol car duty with Sgt Ahmad at that time when they received a message of a fight at Dunlop Street between Indians. Upon reaching Dunlop Street, he testified that he saw the group of Indians starting to disperse. When he stepped out of the police patrol car, Cpl Ang saw Sgt Ahmad following a group of Indians whom the accused was with and who had walked past them. Cpl Ang followed Sgt Ahmad from behind and was about 1 metre behind the latter. According to Cpl Ang, the accused was walking on the extreme right of the group. Cpl Ang noticed him trying to shake something off the right leg, by moving it sideways. Cpl Ang testified that it was a black object. After shaking it off, the accused was seen by Cpl Ang to be walking away. Sgt Ahmad shouted at the accused to stop but he continued to walk away. Sgt Ahmad caught up with the accused but the others in the group walked away. The black object was ascertained to be a screwdriver. The accused was screened on the spot and was found wanted by the traffic police. He was also asked whether the screwdriver belonged to him and he denied that it belonged to him.

6. Other than the evidence of the...

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