Man fined for using modified Maserati, car detained for three months

Lee Cheng Yan was given the maximum fine of $5,000 on each of two charges for using a Maserati luxury car which exhaust system had been altered.
Lee Cheng Yan was given the maximum fine of $5,000 on each of two charges for using a Maserati luxury car which exhaust system had been altered. ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

SINGAPORE - A man was caught several times for using his Maserati luxury car with an altered exhaust system. He used the vehicle to race in Malaysia, a court heard.

Lee Cheng Yan, 33, had been caught eight times between May 2013 and November 2015 for using the car when it had been altered. The final incident was on Nov 21, 2015.

Investigations showed that before the annual inspections between July 2012 and March 2015, Lee would rent an exhaust system which had been approved for use by the Registrar of Vehicles, and install it in the car.

After passing these inspection tests, he would re-install the modified exhaust system, which was not approved for use.

"He does so as he uses the vehicle to race in Malaysia and the modified exhaust system is louder than one approved for use by the Registrar," said Deputy Public Prosecutor Gabriel Choong Hefeng.

There had been five complaints in his neighbourhood for noise pollution as a result, which led to the inspections of his vehicle.

On Tuesday (July 4), Lee was fined a total of $13,500 after admitting to two counts of using the car which had been altered on July 21 and Nov 21, 2015; one charge each of driving without care and attention, and causing hurt to a motorcyclist by doing an act so negligently as to endanger life.

For causing hurt to Haji Zulkifri Faiz Zanal, 23, along Orchard Road on May 9 last year, he was given the maximum $2,500 fine and banned from driving for nine months.

The court heard that at about 4.40am that day, he was driving along Orchard Road with another driver to his right when Lee changed lanes abruptly.

He hit the other car, which hit the rider. Both the biker and his 26-year-old female pillion rider were thrown off their motorcycle. Haji Zulkifri was warded for two days with fractures and given two weeks' medical leave while the pillion rider was warded for one day for multiple abrasions over her abdomen.

On Aug 16, 2015, Lee was driving along New Upper Changi Road when he made an unauthorised U-turn into New Upper Changi Road. He failed to give way to traffic which had the right of way and also encroached into the motorists' path, forcing them to apply brakes and sound their horn to avoid a collision.

Pleading for a fine, Lee's lawyer Wee Hong Shern said his client was truly remorseful.

District Judge Jasvender Kaur imposed the maximum fines on Lee, and ordered the Maserati to be detained by the Registrar for the maximum period of three months.