By Rachel Chan
DR SILVIU Ionescu abandoned a black Audi after mowing down three pedestrians without stopping to help, said police yesterday on the last day of the coroner's inquiry.
Station Inspector Raimi Mohd Yusof with the Traffic Police division, investigating officer of the Dec 15 accidents, said the car had not been stolen outside the Romanian Embassy, as claimed by the former diplomat.
Station Insp Raimi presented a 19-page report on the death of Mr Tong Kok Wai, 30, summing up testimonies, autopsy reports and police findings. The report revealed that the police had conducted two test drives on Jan 6.
The first test drive, which took nine minutes, was from Peace Centre in Sophia Road to Hillcrest Arcadia Condominium in Arcadia Road.
On Dec 15 at 2.30am, Dr Ionescu, 49, drove Ms Jeong Ae Ree, 40, home from a KTV session at Peace Centre to Hillcrest.
The condominium security said the car arrived at 2.47am and left at 2.57am.
The second test drive, from the condominium to the first accident scene at the junction of Bukit Panjang Road and Bangkit Road where Mr Tong was knocked down, took eight minutes.
The accidents took place at about 3.10am.
Station Insp Raimi and Sergeant Leslie Tan Jeok Leng, the officer who took down Dr Ionescu's statement after the car was found on the same day, were the last two witnesses to testify.
On Tuesday, acting charge d'affaires Alexandru Coseru said that the Romanian authorities had requested access to evidence presented at the coroner's inquiry.
The Ministry of Law confirmed receipt of the documents which were left with security personnel at The Treasury building.
Said a spokesman: "The request is now being considered by (the) Attorney-General's Chambers."
State counsel Lau Wing Yum, and lawyer Subhas Anandan, who represents Mr Tong's next-of-kin, have until March 24 to hand in submissions to the court. State Coroner Victor Yeo will give his verdict on March 31.
IONESCU VS POLICE AND WITNESSES
Dr Ionescu's statement was recorded on Dec 15 last year after a black Audi was found in Sungei Kadut. We compare his statement with what was presented in court.
Dr Ionescu: At about 2am...I drove my car (from Sophia Road) back to my office at 48, Jalan Harom Setangkai alone.
Police: Dr Ionescu (left) left Peace Centre in Sophia Road at about 2.30am with Ms Jeong Ae Ree, 40. He reached her home at Hillcrest Arcadia Condominium at 2.47am and drove off 10 minutes later.
He made a left turn into the Pan-Island Expressway, filtered left into the slip road leading to Bukit Timah Expressway, and turned left into Bukit Panjang Road.
Dr Ionescu: I parked my car...along the main road... opposite my unit at 48.
Police: Immediately after the accident, Dr Ionescu continued driving his car and made a right turn into Woodlands Road. He drove into Sungei Kadut Avenue and abandoned his car outside the entrance to a building.
Dr Ionescu: At about 3am, when I was ready to go (home), I looked out from my office and realised that my car...was missing. I then asked my driver, Marius (Trusca)...to drive me around the vicinity of my office using another car...to look for my car.
In court: Mr Trusca, 43, testified on Tuesday that it was at 9am on Dec 15 last year that Dr Ionescu asked him to look around for the Audi in Jalan Harom Setangkai.
Dr Ionescu: After searching for about 15 minutes to 20 minutes...I still could not find my car...I just asked Marius to drop me off along one of the roads...I do not remember where, and I flagged for a taxi for home.
Police: At 3.15am on Dec 15 last year, he took a taxi from Sungei Kadut Avenue to his home at Grange Heights condominium.
Dr Ionescu: I did not have or consume any alcohol at the karaoke.
Police: Investigations revealed that Dr Ionescu had taken alcoholic drinks at Shangri-La Hotel, Clarke Quay and the Legend Palace KTV. His companion, Ms Jeong, testified that he had consumed alcoholic drinks.
Dr Ionescu: I can confirm that I was not involved in any road traffic accident from 9.30pm on Dec 14 till 3am on Dec 15 last year
In court: Part-time bartender Mohamed Noor Hussain (left), 38, positively identified Dr Ionescu as the driver of the black Audi that slammed into three pedestrians in Bukit Panjang Road on Dec 15 last year.
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