Repeat offender jailed 53 months for theft

Posed photo of a man in handcuffs. An unemployed man who stole money and property totalling about $5,500 was jailed for 53 months on Thursday. -- ST FILE PHOTO: WANG HUI FEN
Posed photo of a man in handcuffs. An unemployed man who stole money and property totalling about $5,500 was jailed for 53 months on Thursday. -- ST FILE PHOTO: WANG HUI FEN

An unemployed man who stole money and property totalling about $5,500 was jailed for 53 months on Thursday.

Jackson Lim Teck Meng, 36, had pleaded guilty to four of six charges of theft.

The court had called for a corrective training report which stated he had moderate risk of re-offending. He has convictions for property-related offences in 1999, 2006 and 2009.

On Aug 9 this year, he stole $295 from the cash float bag kept inside a drawer of stall owner Tan Yiow Koon, 46, at Kopitiam food court at Plaza Singapura, Orchard Road, He had gone there, put on a Kopitiam uniform and pretended to set up the stall.

He had previously worked at the stall and knew that the owner kept the padlock key inside the cash register. He decided to try his luck to see if he could get any money as he had lost money gambling at Marina Bay Sands casino.

The following month, he stole $2,800 from his employer, Mr Alex Png Cheong Gaun, 42, owner of BBHQ restaurant at Tyrwhitt Road and gambled away the money at the casino.

When he confessed what he had done, his boss decided to give him a chance. They agreed that Lim would continue working as a waiter, and that he could later make restitution through deductions from his salary.

Two days later, Lim stole cash $300 and a $828 phone from a colleague. He sent an SMS promising to return the items but did not. A police report was made.

The court heard on Oct 13, he was renting a flat in Hougang when he stole coins totalling $157, a gold ring and bracelet from a tenant. He pawned the jewellery for $620 and went to the casino where he lost all the money.

In passing sentence, District Judge Lee Poh Choo told him to apply for a self-exclusion order to bar himself from entering the casino.

She told him that he would not be able to plead for a lenient sentence if he came back to court but would definitely be sentenced to corrective training, which is between five and 14 years behind bars.