Convicted drug offender admits buying narcotics from fridae.com founder Stuart Koe

Stuart Koe, who founded lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender news and social networking site Fridae.com in 2000, is now on trial for one count of drug trafficking.
Stuart Koe, who founded lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender news and social networking site Fridae.com in 2000, is now on trial for one count of drug trafficking.ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOI

SINGAPORE - A convicted drug abuser testified in court on Thursday (Sept 21) that he bought drugs several times from his sex partner Stuart Koe Chi Yeow, founder of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender news and social networking site Fridae.com

Koe, 45, is on trial for one count of drug trafficking.

On the first day of the trial on Thursday, Malaysian Yeoh Kim Koon said Koe had sold him methamphetamine, or Ice, at $100 per gram. There were also times when he would sell him the drug at $120 per gram.

Yeoh, who told the court that he is also known as Eric, added that Koe had also sold him another type of drug known only as "G", which cost $300 for 100ml.

Koe, who is also managing director of local pharmaceutical company ICM Pharma, allegedly sold to Yeoh one packet of crystalline substance containing 0.17g of Ice for $240 on Aug 25 last year.

Koe is accused of committing the offence in his own Spottiswoode Park Road home at around 7.30pm that day.

Koe, who was first charged in a district court on Sept 23 last year, has five other drug-related charges against him. They are for offences that include methamphetamine consumption and possession.

These five charges have been stood down and will be dealt with at a later date.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Wong Woon Kwong told the court on Thursday that Yeoh was Koe's sex partner from July to August last year.

Yeoh, who worked as a Chanel beauty adviser at VivoCity mall at that time, was arrested in his Compassvale Street flat at around 7.20am on Sept 15 last year. Koe was arrested a week later.

Yeoh pleaded guilty on May 31 this year to offences including methamphetamine consumption and possession. He was later sentenced to 16 months' jail.

He told District Judge Olivia Low on Thursday that he first met Koe about eight years ago at a gym.

However, he started communicating with Koe only in July last year, after a mutual friend, known only as Joe, reintroduced them.

Yeoh admitted that he started consuming Ice last year even before this reintroduction.

Yeoh added that he had earlier gone online to meet "Internet friends" via platforms such as Facebook and gay dating app Grindr. He would meet some of them to consume Ice together.

Yeoh admitted that he bought Ice from Koe after they were reintroduced and they referred to the drug as "cream".

When DPP Wong asked him why, he replied: "So that it's not so obvious."

Yeoh said he used communications app Line to send text messages from his mobile phone to Koe whenever he needed the drugs. He would then go to Koe's home to collect them.

Security camera footage taken from the ground-floor lift lobby of Koe's apartment building at around 7.30pm on Aug 25 last year was played in court on Thursday.

At about 7.30pm, Yeoh was seen entering the lift and going up to the accused's unit, where he met the accused. He left the accused's unit at about 7.50pm on the same day.

When DPP Wong asked what happened in the time that had elapsed, Yeoh said that he did not remember.

Koe is represented by lawyers Sunil Sudheesan and Diana Ngiam.

If convicted of drug trafficking, he can be jailed for between five and 20 years. He can also receive between five and 15 strokes of the cane.

The trial resumes on Friday.