Single mum jailed 12 months for role in hurting cabby

She was part of jobless trio who hatched plan to rob an old taxi driver

Desperate for money, a jobless trio in their 20s hatched a plan to rob an old taxi driver last May.

They got into a taxi in Tampines one midnight and directed it to go to the Chinese cemetery in Choa Chu Kang Road.

After they reached the cemetery, two of the passengers got out while the third started slashing the driver with a chopper.

But the sight of blood splattered all over the taxi scared the assailant so much that he fled without getting any money.

Yesterday, single mother Eng Wan Fong, who acted as a lookout, was sentenced to 12 months' jail.

Eng, together with Tan Jing Zi, had dashed out of the taxi, while Eng's boyfriend Goh Tong Chien, 22, caused hurt to the 58-year-old cabby at the cemetery on May 14 last year.

Last month, Goh pleaded guilty to three charges, including that of the slashing, and was jailed a total of 22 months as well as ordered to be given three strokes of the cane.

District Judge Low Wee Ping had called for probation reports on Eng, 22, and Tan, 23, for their role in hurting Mr Sazali Abdullah.

The cabbie was slashed on his right index finger, lower lip and forehead. He was given 17 days of medical leave.

Tan's case has been adjourned to Feb 26.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Tan Wee Hao, who sought 12 to 15 months' jail for Eng, said the insights provided in a probation report were rather "damning".

The report says she committed the offences "out of complete disregard for the law and the lack of consideration for a fellow human being". She is also assessed to have a high risk of offending.

DPP Tan said Eng had played a critical role as she and Goh had taken along the chopper, and targeted a vulnerable public transport worker.

Eng, a mother of one, could have been jailed for up to seven years and fined for causing hurt with a dangerous weapon. Her sentence was backdated to May 15.

The court heard that the trio met at a block in Tampines Street 41 on May 13 last year. Goh and Eng had a chopper, which was wrapped in newspaper and placed inside a green bag.

Eng and Tan agreed to Goh's suggestion to find and rob an old taxi driver as they were facing financial and family problems.

They flagged down Mr Sazali's Trans-Cab taxi in Tampines Avenue 9 at around midnight and directed him to go to the Chinese cemetery in Choa Chu Kang Road.

When the taxi reached Old Choa Chu Kang Road, Eng told the cabby to continue driving till Lim Chu Kang Chinese Cemetery Path 11.

When they got there, Eng and Tan dashed out of the taxi. Goh took out the chopper and started slashing the driver from behind.

Mr Sazali used his right hand to fend off the attacks.

When Goh saw so much blood splattered all over, he got scared and fled. He threw away the chopper.

The victim then drove out of the cemetery to the main road before calling the police.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 27, 2016, with the headline 'Single mum jailed 12 months for role in hurting cabby'. Print Edition | Subscribe