Lawyer gets nod to access teen client charged with vandalism

The five 17-year olds arrested for suspected vandalism at Blk 85A Lorong 4 Toa Payoh. -- ST FILE PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
The five 17-year olds arrested for suspected vandalism at Blk 85A Lorong 4 Toa Payoh. -- ST FILE PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

A lawyer was on Wednesday granted access to his teen client who was one of the five 17-year-olds charged with spray-painting graffiti at the top of a 22-storey HDB block in Toa Payoh. A second application by Mr Choo Zheng Xi for a the name of his client, David William Graaskov, 17, to be gagged, however, was turned down by the court.

Mr Choo's applications were heard in court after he had failed to get permission from the police to speak to his client last week. He argued for the gag order to limit damage to his client by submitting screen shots of online forum discussions in court.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Tang Shangjun had no objection to the access issue, but objected to the gag order as such an application only applies for victims, especially in sexual offences.

Graaskov, Goh Rong Liang, Boaz Koh Wen Jie, Chay Nam Shen and Reagan Tan Chang Zhi were charged last Saturday with vandalism by spraying graffiti on walls at the rooftop of Block 85A Lorong 4 Toa Payoh at about 12.30am on May 7.

They have been remanded for further investigation and will be back in court on Friday. If convicted of vandalism, the five could each be fined up to $3,000 or jailed for up to three years and liable to three to eight strokes of the cane.