Indian-origin man jailed for bomb hoax call at late Singapore PM’s house

Singapore: An Indian-origin man was jailed for four months for a 2004 bomb hoax at the house of Singapore's first prime minister late Lee Kuan Yew.

Ganesan Singaravel, 61, pleaded guilty to an offence under the Telecommunications Act, reported The New Paper Tuesday.

Ganesan drank alcohol till early morning on 13 November, 2004, at a popular spot in Orchard Tower on Singapore's hotel belt of Orchard Road and then made a call from public telephone booth to the police, making reference to a bomb at Yew's house.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Benjamin Samynathan Monday told the court, "The call was made by the accused from a public phone located next to the Thai Embassy (also on Orchard Road). The call's message was clearly false, and the accused knew that the text of the call was false.

Indian-origin man jailed for bomb hoax call at late Singapore PM’s house

File image of late Lee Kuan Yew. Reuters

"A (police) patrol car was sent to Orchard Towers to interview and arrest the accused. He was coherent during his interactions with the officers at the scene. Meanwhile, the officers who were already stationed at Oxley Road (Lee's house) were told to step up patrols and be alert and vigilant," Samynathan further said.

Ganesan was charged on 16 November, 2004, but he fled Singapore about two months later while on bail.
Last year, he was caught overstaying in the US. He told the authorities there that he wanted to return to Singapore. Subsequently, he was detained on his arrival here on 15 July.

Defence lawyers - Ravinderpal Singh and James Ow Yong - stated in their mitigation plea that their client was drunk when he committed the offence.

The plea also stated, "The accused realises how alcohol has utterly destroyed his life and family, leading to his wife to divorce him, leaving him with nothing and his children to give up on him. The accused's family no longer wants anything to do with him. The offence has taken a terrible toll on the accused."

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Updated Date: Jan 22, 2019 11:56:13 IST