Singapore in touch with Thai officials on suspect's return

Singapore authorities are still in touch with their Thai counterparts over a request for the return of a Canadian man linked to a bank robbery here.

David Roach, 28, was on Tuesday sentenced to 14 months' jail in Thailand for violating money laundering and Customs laws by bringing the loot into the country.

He had allegedly carried out the first successful bank robbery in Singapore in more than a decade when he walked out of a Standard Chartered Bank branch in Holland Village with about $30,000 on July 7 last year. He then fled to Thailand where he was arrested and held in a Bangkok jail.

Thai media reports quoted Roach's lawyer as saying that the Canadian admitted only to smuggling currency to Thailand, but not to the Singapore robbery.

Travellers going in and out of Thailand are required to declare if they have more than US$20,000 (S$27,600) or its equivalent in their possession.

The Singapore police told The Straits Times yesterday: "The Singapore authorities remain in touch with the Thai authorities on our request for David James Roach's return and the return of seized evidence to Singapore.

"In the event of his return, the criminal justice process will take its course."

Singapore authorities had previously written to the Thai government seeking assistance to repatriate the Canadian. Thailand, however, rejected the request as it does not have any extradition treaty with Singapore.

But Singapore has extradition arrangements with Canada.

Singapore has bilateral extradition treaties with the United States, Hong Kong and Germany, and extradition arrangements with 40 declared Commonwealth countries, including Canada, under the London Scheme for extradition within the Commonwealth.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 08, 2017, with the headline 'S'pore in touch with Thai officials on suspect's return'. Print Edition | Subscribe