Two accused of stealing Rolex after sleight of hand

Jim Bradley Misso Wen Ping (left) and Joshua Chua Yongcheng allegedly switched a genuine Rolex watch for a fake one while viewing the item at the owner's flat after he had advertised the watch for sale on Carousell.
Jim Bradley Misso Wen Ping (left) and Joshua Chua Yongcheng allegedly switched a genuine Rolex watch for a fake one while viewing the item at the owner's flat after he had advertised the watch for sale on Carousell. ST PHOTOS: WONG KWAI CHOW

Posing as interested buyers of a Rolex watch, two men allegedly swopped the genuine timepiece with a fake copy before fleeing.

But not for long.

Yesterday, Jim Bradley Misso Wen Ping, 20, and Joshua Chua Yongcheng, 24, were each charged with one count of stealing the Rolex GMT 2 watch worth $29,500 from property agent Thomas Tong Guo Xian at around 9.15pm on Jan 22.

Mr Tong, 30, had advertised the watch for sale on the online marketplace Carousell in October last year.

According to earlier reports, he had planned to use the proceeds to buy a home with his fiancee.

Police said in a statement on Wednesday that the two young men contacted Mr Tong to view the watch.

The pair then went to Mr Tong's Upper Boon Keng Road flat.

The police added: "The victim facilitated the request and handed the watch to the suspects for viewing. It is believed that the genuine Rolex watch was replaced with an imitation version by one of the suspects before it was handed back to the victim."

Court papers did not reveal who allegedly replaced the watch.

Mr Tong alerted the police the next day.

Officers from Bedok Police Division managed to track down Misso and Chua through the aid of security camera footage and extensive ground inquiries.

The pair were arrested on Tuesday at the Tuas Checkpoint and police said that the genuine Rolex has been recovered.They were each offered bail of $10,000 yesterday and will be back in court next Thursday.

If convicted of theft, they can each be jailed for up to three years and fined.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 02, 2018, with the headline Two accused of stealing Rolex after sleight of hand. Subscribe