Man shot by police during raid in 2020 gets jail for theft, cheating and drug-related offences

SINGAPORE - A man who was shot by a police officer during a raid had committed theft, cheating and drug-related offences before the incident in 2020.

On Thursday (Aug 25), Prakash Mathivanan, 38, was sentenced to jail for three years and 10 months after he pleaded guilty to eight charges.

A further 23 charges were taken into consideration during his sentencing.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Theong Li Han told the court that Prakash became acquainted with a man named Gardi Bandi, an operations manager at a restaurant where he was seeking employment.

The pair, together with Prakash's girlfriend, Malani Naidu Prabhakar Naidu, conspired to buy items using stolen credit card information and sell them for cash.

The two men also agreed to use those details to pay for hotel stays.

Gardi obtained the credit card details for Prakash, who promised to pay Gardi $100 for each set of details.

Gardi uploaded photographs of the credit card as attachments to an e-mail message and saved the message as a draft in an e-mail account set up for Prakash to access.

Using this scheme, they obtained the UOB credit card details of a Lee Su Lynn and used them to pay for several items worth $2,968.80 in total.

The items, which were ordered on May 2, 2017, from online platform Qoo10, included printers, vacuum cleaners and an air fryer.

On May 24, 2017, Prakash and Gardi agreed that Prakash would book a two-night stay at Raffles Hotel for Gardi using the stolen details of an American Express card held by Mr Solomon Thomas Fernandez.

Gardi had taken a photo of its details from the personal organiser of Mr Fernandez's secretary. Court documents do not say how Gardi was acquainted with Mr Fernandez.

Using the data, Prakash reserved a two-night stay at Raffles Hotel costing $1,401.60.

On May 25, 2017, American Express alerted Mr Fernandez to several unauthorised transactions on his card and he cancelled the card.

But Prakash called American Express, pretending to be Mr Fernandez, and got a new card delivered to a cafe owned by Gardi in Lim Tua Tow Road, in Kovan.

On May 24, 2020, Prakash called Maybank, identifying himself as Mr Fernandez, and got them to send him a replacement credit card.

The card was sent to Mr Fernandez's address, but Prakash retrieved it and used it to make fraudulent transactions.

On June 2, 2020, Maybank lodged a police report about fraudulent transactions totalling $11,883.20 made with the stolen card.

Prakash had also committed other offences.

In January 2017, he was found with at least 0.36g of methamphetamine. In the same year, he also stole an iPad from his stepbrother's wife in April and on May 29 failed to turn up for a urine test. He had been placed on compulsory supervision for 24 months on Jan 5, 2016, and was required to present himself for urine testing at Ang Mo Kio Police Divisional Headquarters every Monday and Friday, except public holidays.

On Nov 5, 2020 - when the shooting occurred - he was arrested around midnight in an apartment by police officers and a search turned up at least 6.38g of methamphetamine.

The police had said previously that a man was shot in the abdomen that morning during a struggle with officers who raided an apartment in City Suites condominium in Balestier Road.

Three policemen in plain clothes, armed with revolvers and handcuffs, had raided the apartment to arrest four people suspected of being involved in a series of cheating cases.

Prakash, who has charges pending against him, will return to court on Sept 8.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.