Clarke Quay gathering: Man fined after not wearing mask properly amid pandemic

Assiddiq Surani was fined $1,700 after he pleaded guilty. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A man who was given a composition fine in 2020 for breaching Covid-19 regulations did not learn his lesson and reoffended during a New Year's gathering near Clarke Quay in January.

Assiddiq Surani, 22, failed to wear his mask properly when a teenage YouTube content creator interviewed him.

He also did not keep a distance of at least 1m from the content creator, Kotra Venkata Sai Rohankrishna, and another teenager, Glaxy Low Xuan Ming.

Kotra was dressed in a Spider-Man costume while Low donned a wrestling mask.

Assiddiq was fined $1,700 on Friday (June 10) after he pleaded guilty to an offence under the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Act.

The two 19-year-olds were dealt with in court earlier for flouting Covid-19 rules.

On May 31, Kotra was fined $4,000 while Low was fined $2,000 on April 26.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Darren Sim told the court on Friday that Assiddiq was in Jurong West when he earlier committed an offence under the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) (Control Order) Regulations 2020.

He was given a composition fine in September 2020.

Details about the amount and his earlier offence were not disclosed in court documents.

The court heard that Assiddiq went to Read Bridge near Clarke Quay after 11pm on Dec 31 last year to meet three friends to welcome the New Year.

Shortly after midnight, Kotra and Low approached Assiddiq's group for an interview.

The DPP said: "The accused and his two friends were interviewed by (Kotra) for a period of less than five minutes.

"In the process, the accused failed to keep a distance of at least 1m from (Kotra) and Glaxy. During the interview, the accused's face mask was pulled under his chin."

The two teenagers recorded a video of the interview and the clip was uploaded onto YouTube on Jan 3.

Multiple men were earlier fined $1,500 each for breaching Covid-19 regulations in relation to the New Year's Eve gathering in Clarke Quay.

Two students who faced more than one charge each were fined $2,000 and $3,000 respectively on March 8.

In an earlier statement, the Urban Redevelopment Authority said 14 people had been hauled to court for the incident, while 19 people had been issued composition fines.

Videos posted online show a rowdy crowd cheering, singing and celebrating, in what the authorities called a blatant flouting of Covid-19 safe management rules and a potential super-spreader event.

Those convicted of breaching Covid-19 regulations can be fined up to $10,000 and jailed up to six months.

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