Man jailed seven years for Toa Payoh wet market stabbing 13 years ago

Eng Bak Siong (right) who has been on the run for more than 10 years, was brought back to Singapore from Malaysia to face a charge of murder committed in 2001. He was on the run for more than 10 years after fatally stabbing a man. The law finall
Eng Bak Siong (right) who has been on the run for more than 10 years, was brought back to Singapore from Malaysia to face a charge of murder committed in 2001. He was on the run for more than 10 years after fatally stabbing a man. The law finally caught up with him last July when the Malaysian police arrested him for immigration offences and he was extradited back to Singapore. -- FILE PHOTO: SHIN MIN

He was on the run for more than 10 years after fatally stabbing a man. The law finally caught up with him last July when the Malaysian police arrested him for immigration offences and he was extradited back to Singapore.

On Monday, the man, Eng Bak Siong, 60, was jailed for seven years for causing grievous hurt to a man at a wet market in Toa Payoh in 2001.

Originally accused of murder, he had pleaded guilty to the amended charge of causing grievous hurt to odd-job labourer Peng Teck Hoe, 32, with Neo Eng Hwee, Tan Keng Heng and other unknown persons, on Feb 21, 2001.

It all started when Eng's friend, Neo, believed that he had been cheated during a card game, the court heard.

Neo, 58, called Eng to help him confront the cheats. When Eng went to the market with a few other men, Neo pointed out the alleged cheat Peng and another man to him.

They started tussling and Eng thrusted a knife two to three times at Mr Peng, stabbing him in the abdomen. Mr Peng was taken to hospital where he died the same day.

The same day, Eng and Neo fled to Malaysia while Tan did so on July 20 that year.

Neo, an odd-job worker, surrendered himself at Tuas Checkpoint in 2005. The then 51-year-old was sentenced to three years and eight months in prison in 2005 for similarly causing grievous hurt.

Tan, now 69, also an odd-job worker, is still at large.

Eng, a former renovation contractor, has two previous convictions for causing hurt with a dangerous weapon. He was given nine months and four strokes on each charge in 1982.

District Judge Salina Ishak noted several aggravating factors including the fact that Eng was the one who inflicted the fatal wound on a vulnerable part of Mr Peng. Eng had also assaulted the victim in a violent and excessive manner, the judge added.

Eng could have been jailed for up to 10 years and fined for the offence.

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