SINGAPORE - Seven months after his release from prison, Zulkarnain Jaafar caused hurt to a woman while robbing her with another man.
The 38-year-old was given a six-and-a-half year jail term and 12 strokes of the cane on Wednesday.
He had admitted to jointly robbing and causing hurt to sales executive Lee Hui Eng, 48, of her sling bag, a coin pouch, a mobile phone worth $400 and $300 cash with a 21-year-old co-accused at a lift landing of a block in Crawford Lane last Nov 16.
A district court heard that in the early hours of that day, after a night of drinking at Arab Street, Zulkarnain and the co-accused decided to commit either snatch theft or robbery as they were in need of money on Nov 16.
They saw the victim carrying a sling bag and followed her to the lift lobby of the HDB block at about 8am.
All three got into the lift. When Ms Lee was about to get out of the lift on an upper floor, Zulkarnain grabbed her from behind and placed his hands around her neck to choke her. She struggled and was punched by the pair on her face and stomach.
Zulkarnain then shouted to the co-accused to take the victim's sling bag. The latter grabbed it and both fled down the stairs to hail a cab along the main road.
Neighbours heard the commotion, came to her help and called the police.
While in the taxi, Zulkarnain and the co-accused searched the sling bag and took out some cash to pay the taxi fare. When they alighted in Geylang, they took out the phone and cash, and threw the sling bag into a dustbin.
Subsequently, they saw a passer-by and asked if he wanted to buy the iPhone.
When the 27-year-old man said he did not have enough money, the duo suggested that he pawn his current cellphone and use the money to buy the iPhone from them. The man gave them $100 first in exchange for the iPhone and arranged to pay the balance of $40 once he got his salary.
The duo split the proceeds from the sale of the iPhone as well as the cash found in the victim's sling bag.
Zulkarnain was last sentenced to eight years' corrective training and caning in 2006 for armed robbery, robbery with hurt and theft. He also has previous convictions for property offences.
He could have been jailed for up to 20 years and a minimum 12 strokes of the cane.
The case against the co-accused is at pre-trial conference stage.