News

Killer has mental issues

The court heard yesterday that driver Xiao Guiliang, 31, suffers from major depressive disorder with "associated psychotic features".

Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Chee Min Ping said this was likely to have been caused by a head injury he suffered in 2010 when an automated carpark gantry descended on his head.

She added that the Chinese national would have to continue psychiatric treatment for at least two years, or longer.

However, she urged Justice Tay Yong Kwang to sentence Xiao to between 10 to 12 years' jail.

"(His) mental condition is not so serious that he had no ability to appreciate the gravity and significance of his criminal conduct," said DPP Chee.

VICIOUS

She added: "(He) committed the offence in a particularly depraved manner - he inflicted a total of 192 wounds, many of which were extremely serious injuries.

"The manner in which he attacked her was particularly vicious, which included slashing (her) on her scalp, face, neck and torso. The vicious attack consequently resulted in (her) death due to multiple wounds with features of asphyxia."

Xiao is represented by lawyers Sunil Sudheesan and Diana Ngiam.

Ms Ngiam urged Justice Tay to sentence their client to less than 10 years' jail.

She stressed that it was Ms Zhang Jie's action of holding a knife towards Xiao that sent him "beyond the tipping point".

Ms Ngiam added it is likely that Xiao will be sent home to China upon release.

"(He) has a strong family support system at home and there is no real concern for a risk of relapse of (his) psychiatric condition," she said.

She pointed out that Xiao's actions on July 7, 2013 were uncharacteristic of his "otherwise non-violent disposition".