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Crime

Elena Chong
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

Crime

CNB officer jailed for making false reports

The Straits Times | Elena Chong | Friday, Oct 17, 2014

A Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) officer was sentenced to three months in jail yesterday for lodging two false police reports "out of sheer laziness".

But Low Vins, 26, is appealing against his conviction and sentence, and is out on $20,000 bail.

He was found guilty after a three-day trial of lying to a narcotics officer that house visits were made to the homes of two drug consumption offenders, Sim Soon Lee and Soh Hock Tuan, but they could not be traced.

The prosecution's case is that Low was the investigation officer in-charge of the two cases when he falsified the two house visit reports on Jan 27, 2012.

Evidence showed that a day before, both Sim and Soh duly reported to the bail office at CNB Supervision at Bedok police division headquarters.

As Low was not in, his colleague, Staff Sergeant Vasanthakumar Pillai, called him to find out whether to extend the duo's bail or remand them.

Low told the staff sergeant to extend their bail. This turned out to be a mistake, as Low would have breached the timeline to complete the investigation.

Low then lodged the two false reports so that the Special Investigation Team of CNB would investigate the two men.

The prosecution argued that Low wanted to avoid any internal disciplinary rebuke for his mishandling of the matter.

The matters came to light when Sim's sister complained to the CNB via e-mail that her brother had been wrongfully charged in court and deprived of a chance to enter a drug rehabilitation centre.

Low later confessed that he had lodged the false reports out of sheer laziness, and that no house visits had been made.

Pressing for a jail sentence yesterday, Deputy Public Prosecutor Sheryl Janet George argued that the false reports showed Low's blatant disregard for not only the responsibility of the office he was representing but also the life and liberty of others.

Soh, like Sim, was also charged in court but their charges were subsequently withdrawn.

The maximum penalty for giving false information to a public servant is one year's jail and a $5,000 fine on each charge.

elena@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on October 15, 2014.
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