Ex-property agent fined for using scapegoat to take blame for traffic offence

His attempts to get others to take the rap for his traffic violations landed former property agent Haresh Vishindas Chandiramani in hot soup.

He was fined a total of $13,000 on Friday for perverting the course of justice and attempting to do so.

The 42-year-old was fined $5,000 for offering $200 to part-time property agent Raymond Tan Yew Chye, as a reward for him to assume criminal liability on his behalf for driving along a road shoulder in September 2009.

He was also fined $8,000 for getting Azli Mohd Hasan to take the rap for his traffic offence.

When Mr Tan rejected him, he had asked Mr Azli for help.

Mr Azli, 38, was dealt with two years ago after completing a five-week jail sentence for assuming criminal liability on behalf of Chandiramani.

The prosecution had urged the court to jail Chandiramani, who had been found guilty, after trial, of both charges.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Shaun Lee said Chandiramani was more culpable than Mr Azli, who had pleaded guilty. He highlighted several aggravating factors such as pre-meditation, and that Chandiramani initiated the offence by approaching two people.

Defence counsel K. Jayakumar Naidu asked for a fine on compassionate grounds given his client's present health condition.

Chandiramani, who is in a wheelchair, recently had his right leg amputated below the knee. He suffers from a host of medical ailments including heart and kidney problems.

District Judge Hamidah Ibrahim said she was prepared to depart from the sentencing norm for this case purely on compassionate grounds.

Citing a recent High Court case, she said an accused person's infirmity can also be taken into consideration.

"Of course, that doesn't mean that accused persons in such circumstances will be spared from an imprisonment term,'' she said.

Chandiramani will pay $4,000 first and the balance in a month. He could have been jailed for up to seven years and fined on each charge.

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