SINGAPORE - A former nightclub disc jockey who had embarked on an elaborate scheme to exonerate herself by deceiving law enforcement, the prosecution and the court was sentenced on Tuesday (June 20) to 16 months' jail for drug consumption.
District Judge Tan Jen Tse said a deterrent sentence was called for in this case because of Low Lovynn Lagman's conduct after her arrest in misleading the authorities.
The 33-year-old threw in the towel only on the third day of her trial early this year (Jan 9). She did this during her defence.
She had furnished the prosecution with fabricated evidence and perpetuated the deceit by tendering false, tainted evidence at trial to exonerate herself, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Sharmila Sripathy-Shanaz who asked for an exemplary sentence of at least 18 months' jail to be imposed for her "highly egregious conduct".
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Low, who was a marketing administrative assistant and secretary, had claimed that psychiatric medication, spiked alcoholic drinks or health supplements could have been the cause of methamphetamine in her urine.
She was arrested on April 22, 2014. Fourteen months later, she falsely attributed the methamphetamine in her urine to the consumption of the Grenade slimming pill on the day of her arrest.
She claimed she had bought the pills from a person called "Sudar" at True Fitness gym at Tampines in March 2014.
The court heard that she had tampered with the contents of the capsule and submitted the adulterated pill to mislead the defence forensic expert.
She procured forged documents from the gym to buttress her claim that she had been a member of the gym at the time of the offence when she had actually joined in July that year, nine to 10 weeks after her arrest.
DPP Sharmila submitted on Tuesday that Low had led the court on a "wild goose chase", with the result that precious court time was wasted.
Low, she argued, was not truly a first offender, and was no "babe in the woods". Neither was the single episode of drug consumption the only instance of consumption as her urine was tested positive in 2010 and 2014.
"The accused, by these acts, has demonstrated a flagrant disregard of the law. This contempt for the justice system permeated every stage of the case," she said.
Her stubborn lack of remorse manifested in the conduct of a sham defence and wasted valuable State resources, said the DPP.
Low's lawyers Sunil Sudheesan and Diana Ngiam said in their mitigation plea that Low essentially lied to cover an earlier lie. Counsel said she got herself into a spiral from which she did not know how to get out of.
Urging the court to sentence Low to around 12 months, Mr Sunil said this case involved a person who was not brave enough to face the consequences of her decision to take methamphetamine.
Low was allowed to defer sentence to July 7. She could have been jailed for up to 10 years and/or fined up to $20,000 for drug consumption.