Man jailed 6 months for online posting inciting violence against cops who arrested teen Benjamin Lim

Internet marketeer Chia Choon Kiat was sentenced to 6 months' jail for online postings that contain incitements to violence against police officers.
Internet marketeer Chia Choon Kiat was sentenced to 6 months' jail for online postings that contain incitements to violence against police officers. ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

SINGAPORE - An Internet marketeer was jailed for six months on Thursday (Oct 20) for online postings containing incitements to violence.

Between Feb 2 and 5 in 2016, Chia Choon Kiat, 41, who used the moniker Rambo Power, posted on his Facebook page a link to a Yahoo news article on the death of 14-year-old Benjamin Lim with a comment to "take matters into our own hands'', reveal the identities of the five plain-clothes policeman and "handle them ourselves. Kill them.''

On Jan 24, 2016, he also put up on his Facebook page titled "CigButtWarriors'' a post containing an incitement to violence by targeting National Environment Agency (NEA) officers and their family members.

Chew had admitted to three of eight charges. The third charge was for posting a graphic video depicting the ritualistic killing of a pig, and a comment to "Let's do this to NEA Cigarette Butt Officers''.

 

The police found out about Chew's postings after they were alerted to an article on the Facebook page of news outlet "All Singapore Stuff'' on Feb 5 on Benjamin Lim's suicide shortly after being released from police custody for allegedly molesting a girl.

The article highlighted a post by a "Raging netizen'' that had encouraged violence against the Police, and called for action to be taken against him.

Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Sanjiv Vaswani told the court that investigations showed that Chia was behind the post.

Chia had commented: "When people buay lun (Hokkien for cannot endure) already... will need to take matters into our own hands. Please reveal the identify of the 5 plain clothes officers and we go handle them ourselves. Kill them.''

Chia later admitted setting up a Facebook page "Cigarette Butt Warriors'' which contained several incendiary posts against NEA enforcement officers. He did this because he had been fined some 10 years ago for throwing a cigarette butt in a drain.

DPP Sanjiv said even before the post connected with Benjamin Lim's death, Chia had been engaging in an online hate campaign against NEA officers since Dec 13, 2015.

DPP Sanjiv, who sought a total sentence of six months' jail, drew the court's attention to Chia's escalating behaviour, which culminated in the posting of the video of the killing of the pig.

He said Chia shut down his Facebook page and "Cigarette Butt Warriors'' page shortly after the ASS posts went viral. He submitted that Chia did it to avoid detection.

Chia's lawyer Alfred Dodwell said his client was remorseful and very unlikely to re-offend. He said Chia has now "switched his life off'' from all these social media platforms, reformed himself from his past behaviour and is looking forward to building his life up after finishing his jail term.

An Institute of Mental Health psychiatrist had stated that Chia did not suffer from any mental illness while private psychiatrist Y.C. Lim said he had a condition of "over valued ideas'' which could evolve into delusions.

Chia could have been jailed for up to five years and/or fined per charge.