Little India Riot: Prosecution wraps up case against first man to claim trial

State prosecutors wrapped up their case on Thursday against construction worker Mahalingam Thavamani, the first among 25 men charged for their role in the Little India riot to claim trial.

Thavamani, an Indian national, is accused of obstructing police during the Dec 8 riot, when he allegedly tried to enter a restricted area along Belilios Road despite being told not to. The 27-year-old maintains he was only waiting for his younger brother who had gone missing in the night's chaos and has a medical history of fainting spells.

Taking the stand on Thursday was one of the five friends who were with the accused on Dec 8, grass cutter Balakritinan Madhu Damodran, 27. He is the prosecution's sixth and final witness.

Damodran told the court that he had not observed Mahalingam disobeying any police orders or acting in an agitated manner towards the police, as the officer who had ordered his arrest had earlier testified. The court also heard that defence counsel B. J. Lean would be making submissions in early May that there is no case to answer.