14 months' jail for drug offender who tried to escape

A drug offender tried to escape from police custody after his arrest by jumping over a railing at Buona Vista MRT station, falling about 3m to the ground.

Officers immediately gave chase, and Chua Yong Sheng was caught again.

The 24-year-old waiter was jailed for one year and two months yesterday after pleading guilty to one count each of escaping from custody as well as methamphetamine possession and consumption.

Before handing down the sentence, District Judge Marvin Bay said that Chua's attempt to flee must be taken seriously.

"This is not just about your attempting to avoid the consequences of your law-breaking - in this case drug consumption," the judge said.

"Your act of attempted escape could potentially injure yourself, the officers and members of the public in the vicinity in your flight from justice."

The court heard that two full-time national service police officers were patrolling near the MRT station at around 11pm on Jan 25 when they spotted Chua outside a convenience store.

They conducted a check on him and found narcotics as well as drug paraphernalia in his possession.

The officers took him to the second storey of the MRT station as they wanted to interview him at the staff rest area. Chua was then handcuffed and told to sit on a chair.

At around 11.40pm, he suddenly stood up, ran towards the railing and jumped before falling onto the ground.

After he was caught a second time, the waiter was taken to hospital and his urine samples later tested positive for traces of methamphetamine.

The court heard that police also found a packet of crystalline substance in his possession and it contained about 1.5g of the same drug.

For escaping from police custody, Chua could have been jailed for up to two years and fined.

He could have been jailed for up to 10 years and fined up to $20,000 for drug consumption.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 20, 2018, with the headline '14 months' jail for drug offender who tried to escape'. Print Edition | Subscribe