19-year-old NSF given 2-year probation after punching mother with knuckle-duster

SINGAPORE - A 19-year-old full-time national serviceman was given a two-year probation on Friday (Oct 20) for punching his mother while wearing a knuckle-duster.

Rajen Zulueta Rajenthiran, who pleaded guilty to one count each of assault and being armed with an offensive instrument, must also perform 140 hours of community service.

His parents are bonded for $5,000 to ensure his good behaviour.

The NSF had been allowed to return home daily as he was not a stay-in personnel.

At around midnight on June 27, he had gone back to his Yishun flat with his girlfriend, after booking out.

His 48-year-old mother was unhappy that his girlfriend had followed him home at such a late hour, the court heard.

His mother followed them into his bedroom and both got into a quarrel.

He punched her left arm when she refused to leave his room.

Rajen then picked up a knuckle duster, slipped it onto his right hand and told his mother: "I will use this to punch you", before hitting her twice on the arm.

His mother made a police report at around 1.30am that day.

According to Rajen, he had found the knuckle duster on a grass patch and taken it home.

His mother went to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital where a doctor found a bruise on her left upper arm.

Rajen's lawyer, Mr Peter Fernando, told the court that his client was extremely remorseful.

Mr Fernando asked that the youth be given a chance to redeem himself and prove to his family that he was "not a lost cause".

For assault, Rajen could have been jailed for up to two years and fined up to $5,000.

For being armed with an offensive instrument, he could have been jailed for up to two years.