Bedok double murder: Indonesian court sentences maid to 20 years' jail

It reduced Java native's term from life imprisonment upon appeal over 2017 killing of elderly couple in S'pore

Khasanah (top, right) left for Indonesia via ferry from HarbourFront Centre after killing (above) Mr Chia Ngim Fong and his wife Chin Sek Fah in 2017. PHOTOS: SHIN MIN DAILY NEWS, TRIBRATA NEWS
Khasanah (above) left for Indonesia via ferry from HarbourFront Centre after killing Mr Chia Ngim Fong and his wife Chin Sek Fah in 2017. PHOTO: TRIBRATA NEWS

An Indonesian maid who killed and stole from an elderly couple in Bedok in 2017 will spend 20 years in jail in her home country after a trial there for the double murder.

The Indonesian court ruling was revealed yesterday in a coroner's inquiry into the deaths of Mr Chia Ngim Fong, 79, and his wife, Madam Chin Sek Fah, 78.

The coroner's court in Singapore heard that Khasanah, who goes by only one name, was originally sentenced to life imprisonment in Indonesia but had the sentence reduced on appeal.

Khasanah, who escaped to Indonesia after the crime, was not handed over to the authorities in Singapore even though her offences were committed here.

Instead, the Indonesian National Police worked with the Singapore Police Force (SPF) to solve the crime, The Straits Times previously reported.

Khasanah, then 41, was not sent to Singapore due to the principle of personaliteit, which requires any Indonesian arrested in the country for a crime committed overseas to be processed in Indonesia, instead of being sent to the jurisdiction where the offence took place.

Khasanah, who came from Java, had worked for the couple at Block 717 Bedok Reservoir Road for about a month before the murders.

They were found tied up and unconscious in their five-room executive flat on June 21, 2017.

In the coroner's inquiry yesterday, Assistant Superintendent Mahathir Mohamad from the SPF told State Coroner Kamala Ponnampalam that Mr Chia suffered blunt force trauma to his head, while Madam Chin sustained blunt force trauma to her head and chest.

The court heard that Khasanah left for Indonesia via ferry from HarbourFront Centre at 1.20pm on June 21, 2017 after killing the pair and stealing from them.

Khasanah left for Indonesia via ferry from HarbourFront Centre after killing (above) Mr Chia Ngim Fong and his wife Chin Sek Fah in 2017. PHOTO: SHIN MIN DAILY NEWS

ASP Mahathir said that after fleeing, Khasanah was in an Internet cafe in Indonesia where she was overheard talking to somebody over the phone about her offences.

Indonesian police were alerted, and on June 28, 2017, they arrested her in Tungkal Ilir, in Jambi province in Sumatra, after raiding her room at Hotel Nanber.

ASP Mahathir told the court yesterday that Khasanah's murder trial took place in an Indonesian court between Feb 27 and May 2 in 2018.

She was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment.

This sentence was reduced to 20 years' jail following an appeal on Aug 15 that year.

Reasons for this reduction were not revealed in court yesterday.

State Coroner Kamala will be giving her findings today.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 02, 2020, with the headline Bedok double murder: Indonesian court sentences maid to 20 years' jail. Subscribe