Man gets 10 years' jail, 14 strokes, driving ban for multiple offences

Angry that he had been questioned previously by a man for calling out "Oi Oi" to his girlfriend, an odd-job worker attacked the man with a chopper early one morning at Orchard Towers.

Muhammad Farouq Mohamed Allaadin Ebrahim Elsayd, now 29, was in his friend's rental car at Orchard Towers at about 4am on Oct 16, 2015 when he saw Ms Nurul Hidayatullah Mohamed Ali, then 23, whom he had met previously at Tri-Amp Acoustic club.

When he saw her with the victim, Mr Mohammad Haikal Hamzah, then 26, Farouq alighted and walked over to them. He shouted at and abused Mr Haikal at the lift lobby.

Mr Haikal said he did not know Farouq and asked what he wanted.

Farouq replied: "You ask me who I am? You will know who I am."

He then pulled out a 30cm-long chopper and repeatedly swung it at the victim, and also struck him on the back of his head. Mr Haikal tried to use his hands to defend himself and was injured as a result.

Farouq eventually stopped the attack and fled. He left in his friend's car and alighted near The Heeren shopping centre. He then threw away his bloodstained hoodie and chopper.

The court heard that Farouq got to know Ms Nurul at Tri-Amp Acoustic club in Foch Road, where she was a waitress. He met Mr Haikal only once when the victim took Ms Nurul home from the club.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Star Chen said: "The accused stated that he felt angry towards the victim after that previous occasion because the victim had questioned the accused when he called out 'Oi Oi' to Ms Nurul."

Mr Haikal, who was hospitalised until Oct 18 that year, stated that for two months after the incident, he needed help to eat, shower or do things that required his hands. He is still unable to flex his left middle finger and right thumb.

Five days after the incident, Farouq was driving a rental car when he failed to obey a police signal to stop at a road barrier in Kitchener Road at about 3am.

Farouq, who was then driving under a year-long driving ban, reversed his car when he was some 30m away from the road block and turned into King George's Avenue.

Pursued by a police car, he drove along Horne Road, Tyrwhitt Road, Beatty Lane and Foch Road in a rash manner. He drove for nearly 6km before the car hit a wall at Woodsville Tunnel. He alighted and fled on foot. Police later found a knife inside a black cover on the floor mat on the driver's side.

Yesterday, Farouq pleaded guilty to 14 charges out of 38 and was sentenced to 10 years' jail and 14 strokes of the cane, and was banned from driving for four years.

Among his offences were drug consumption, possession and trafficking; driving-related charges; having one or more identity cards; and giving false information to the police.

Lawyer Alice Tan, assigned to him under the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme, said Farouq has vowed to turn over a new leaf. She said her client, who lost his mother to cancer last month, is remorseful for committing the offences.

District Judge Jasvender Kaur backdated his sentence to Oct 1 last year.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 02, 2017, with the headline 'Man gets 10 years' jail, 14 strokes, driving ban for multiple offences'. Print Edition | Subscribe