Man gets jail and caning for slashing two others in coffeeshop

The man who used a knife to attack another man four years ago was sentenced to 15 months' jail and three strokes of the cane.
The man who used a knife to attack another man four years ago was sentenced to 15 months' jail and three strokes of the cane.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A man, who used a knife to attack another man four years ago was sentenced to 15 months' jail and three strokes of the cane on Tuesday (Nov 17).

Tan Swee Leng, 44, then unemployed, pleaded guilty to hurting Mr Ow Leong Seng, 49, by slashing him on his hands, right shoulder and head at Jia Xiang coffeeshop at Changi Village Road on Sept 11, 2011.

A second charge of slashing Mr Chua Chek Seng, 41, the victim's friend, was considered in sentencing.

A district court heard that Mr Chua had just attended a wedding celebration at Aloha Changi Chalet that evening when he saw Mr Ow and invited him for coffee at the Jia Xiang coffeeshop.

Meanwhile, Mr Chua also asked Tan to meet him there so that they could settle a debt of about RM20,000 which he owed Tan. Tan agreed.

Before leaving to meet Mr Chua, Tan took a knife with a 45cm-long blade from his kitchen and hid it under his shirt.

He also asked several of his friends to go with him as "standby'' in case anything happened to him.

At the coffee shop, Mr Chua claimed to be broke and handed Tan $100. Tan was unhappy with the amount. Tense words were exchanged, and Mr Chua banged and kicked the table.

Tan took out the knife and slashed Mr Chua. Mr Ow then swung a chair at Tan causing him to drop the knife.

Tan picked up the knife, and kicked Mr Ow, causing him to fall. He then slashed the victim.

When he saw Mr Chua running away, he gave chase, but fled when he saw two police cars at the road side.

Tan was arrested about nine months later at the Woodlands Checkpoint when he returned from Malaysia.

The victim suffered cuts on both hands. He also had a cut each on his shoulder and scalp.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Soh Weiqi highlighted that there was pre-meditation, as Tan took a dangerous weapon to the meeting. She said the two victims, who were unarmed, suffered multiple injuries.

Tan could have been jailed for up to seven years, fined, caned or received any combined punishment.