Taxi driver forged clearance documents to enter airfreight centre to pick up fare

Tan Cheng Thong was fined $15,000 for forging taxi clearance documents to pick up passengers and the Changi Air Freight Centre.
Tan Cheng Thong was fined $15,000 for forging taxi clearance documents to pick up passengers and the Changi Air Freight Centre. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A taxi driver forged a dozen taxi clearance documents purportedly from a logistics company so that he could use them to enter Changi Air Freight Centre (CAC) to pick up passengers.

In 2015, Tan Cheng Thong, 66, was issued with a taxi clearance document by Pantos Logistics Singapore to ferry workers from their office within CAC.

The last taxi clearance document expired in December 2015.

He wanted to continue doing so as this was more profitable than normal road side pickups, so he decided to forge the monthly taxi clearance document.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Grace Goh Chioa Wei said Tan used the forged documents to enter CAC on at least two occasions in January and February last year, until he was caught on Feb 24 the same year.

At about 12.30am that day, an auxiliary police officer was checking Tan's taxi clearance document when he noticed some details which were painted over using liquid paper.

The officer informed his supervisor who then called the police. Tan was arrested.

DPP Goh sought a fine of $5,000 to be imposed after Tan's guilty plea on three charges of forgery.

She said that the security of the CAC had been compromised, and in this era of increased incidence of terrorist attacks, general deterrence was needed to send an unequivocal message that such conduct would not be tolerated.

For the first nine months of last year, she said, 15 people were arrested for offences under the Protected Areas and Protected Places Act, mostly involving cases of travellers misusing their boarding passes, or airport staff abusing their airport seasonal pass.

"Places gazetted as protected places and protected ares are of national security interest to Singapore and any breach ought not to be taken lightly," she added.

Tan was fined $15,000. He could have been jailed for up to four years and/or fined on each charge.

Ten other charges, including attempted unauthorised entry into a protected place, were considered in sentencing.