News

He cried in the dock

He sat dumbstruck in the dock after the judge sentenced him for his offences.

It was a far cry from the intimidating demeanour while confronting his former landlady in May 2013, and his arrogance in court last month.

Full-time national serviceman Pierre Chng Yuheng, 19, had been found guilty of two counts of criminal intimidation, for which he was fined $4,500.

Then came the surprise conviction of contempt of court - and the seven-day jail sentence.

Chng, whose family members were not in court yesterday, then took out his mobile phone and spoke to his mother, Ms Chng Leng Khim.

He appeared to be trying his best to control his tears. But he soon turned emotional.

His voice cracked and the tears flowed when he told his mother to be strong.

While waiting to submit his application to file an appeal, he was overheard telling his mother: "Cry it off tonight. Be strong tomorrow.

"I want the family to be strong. I will be out and I will see you soon. I love you."

He spoke to her for more than 30 minutes - reassuring the single mother that he would be fine.

After he hung up, a police officer slapped a pair of handcuffs on him. He was seen sitting slumped in the dock.

Chng, who did not have a lawyer, later filed an appeal against all three charges.

He also asked for the sentences to be suspended until after the appeal.

But District Judge Lim Keng Yeow only granted a stay of execution on the criminal intimidation charges.

This means Chng will have to serve his jail term for the contempt charge.

His bail pending appeal was also increased from $2,000 to $5,000.

Cry it off tonight. Be strong tomorrow. I want the family to be strong. I will be out and I will see you soon. I love you.

- Pierre Chng Yuheng to his mother