Man set fire to own home as he was angry over his mother's nagging

SINGAPORE - Angry with his mother who had nagged at him the night before, a man set fire to his own home and caused nearly $31,000 in damages.

Roslan, 37, who goes by only one name, was jailed for five years on Thursday (Feb 14) after pleading guilty to one count of committing mischief by fire.

He lived in a Yishun flat with his mother, Madam Salbiah Musa, and younger brother, Mr Saleh Muhamad Jamal.

The court heard that Madam Salbiah had nagged at him on Sept 6 last year, as he had failed to take care of her.

At around 2.30pm the next day, he bumped into Mr Saleh and Madam Salbiah at the ground floor of their block.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Charleston Teo said the younger man was accompanying their mother to see a doctor, as she was unwell.

Still angry with Madam Salbiah, Roslan went up to their flat on the fourth storey and set fire to wardrobes belonging to his two family members.

He also placed some burning paper against Madam Salbiah's mattress, and it caught fire.

He left the unit when it became too smoky.

Mr Putra Syadad Khamsani, who lived next door, noticed that the flat was on fire at around 2.50pm.

He tried but failed to extinguish the fire, as it had grown too large.

He later evacuated his own family members from their home and alerted the police.

Police officers and personnel from the Singapore Civil Defence Force soon arrived at the scene and residents of the block were asked to evacuate.

Madam Salbiah, who returned to the block at around 3.40pm, fainted at the ground floor when she saw that her home was on fire.

She was then taken to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital. She was later found to be suffering from a urinary tract infection.

A man who lived on the 11th storey was rushed to the Singapore General Hospital for smoke inhalation.

Their medical bills totalled nearly $300.

Realising that he had committed an offence, Roslan surrendered himself at the Ang Mo Kio North Neighbourhood Police Centre later that day.

Those convicted of committing mischief by fire can be jailed either for life or for up to 10 years and fined.