Youth arrested for inciting violence and posting religious hateful comments on social media

SINGAPORE - A youth suspected of inciting violence and posting comments intending to wound religious feelings on social media was arrested on Monday (June 8).

In a statement the same day, police said they arrested the 19-year-old Singapore permanent resident after they received many reports on Sunday and Monday about an Instagram user who had posted insensitive comments and threats that could incite violence against a group of people.

The posts also contained hate comments that could wound religious feelings, police said.

Officers from Jurong Police Division established the youth's identity through investigations and arrested him, seizing a laptop, a computer and a mobile phone.

The youth was identified by Twitter users as a student from Temasek Polytechnic (TP).

In a statement on Twitter on Monday morning, the school said it is aware of and takes a very serious view of the offensive comments made by its student, adding that the student in question has taken down the posts.

"TP is investigating the incident, and will not hesitate to mete out the necessary disciplinary action," it added.

Under the Penal Code, those convicted of making a document containing incitement to violence can be jailed for up to five years, fined, or face both penalties.

Those found guilty of posting comments with deliberate intent to wound religious or racial feelings of any person can be jailed up to three years, fined, or face both penalties.

In its statement, the police said it will not condone any acts that threaten racial and religious harmony in Singapore.

"Any person who makes remarks that can cause ill-will and hostility between the different races and religions will be dealt with swiftly and firmly," it said.

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