Brutal robber bashes victim with rock, tree branch, three concrete slabs
After viciously beating a man, Indian national Periyasamy Devarajan, 23, stripped his victim and left him to die.
All that for the man's mobile phone.
His victim's decomposing body was discovered under the secluded Kampong Java Flyover nearly two days later.
Periyasamy yesterday pleaded guilty in the High Court to culpable homicide for attacking his compatriot, Mr Raju Arivazhagen, 31, during a robbery.
Pretending to help Mr Raju find his lost wallet in the early hours of Feb 8, 2012, Periyasamy led him to under the flyover where he bashed him with a rock, tree branch and three heavy concrete slabs.
He then took off Mr Raju's trousers and underwear to rummage through the pockets.
Periyasamy left the man lying in a drain under the flyover.
Court documents said that Periyasamy started working as a construction worker for a scaffolding company in October 2011. But by Jan 21, 2012, he stopped going to work and four days later, stopped returning to his dormitory.
His $800 salary was withheld. Periyasamy also owed money to his uncle, who paid for him to work in Singapore.
On Feb 7, 2012, which was also the Hindu festival of Thaipusam, Periyasamy met his brother for a drink at around Tekka market at about 7.40pm.
When his brother left at 11.30pm, Periysamy walked to a football field near the Little India MRT station.
Along the way, he found the wallet that Mr Raju had dropped. After taking $20 and an ez-link card inside, Periyasamy threw the wallet away.
That same day, Mr Raju, also a construction worker, left work early.
Married with no children, he went to two temples with friends to mark Thaipusam, going on to Little India for drinks at about 9.20pm.
By about 12.45am, Mr Raju seemed slightly drunk so a friend accompanied him to Dorset Road where he hailed a taxi.
But Mr Raju quickly alighted when he realised he had dropped his wallet, going back to search for it.
He ran into Periyasamy and asked if he had seen a black wallet.
Periyasamy said yes, and led Mr Raju to the flyover to rob him.
Standing at 1.72m, Periyasamy is at least half a head taller than Mr Raju, who was 1.54m tall.
CCTV footage from the Tanglin Police Divisional Headquarters (Tanglin HQ) showed the men walking towards the flyover at 2.32am. It takes about three minutes to walk from Tanglin HQ to the flyover.
There, Periyasamy struck Mr Raju on the head and face with a rock measuring about 5cm and a branch about the length of a baseball bat.
As his victim started bleeding, Periyasamy continued the attack at a drain a few steps away, bludgeoning Mr Raju with three concrete slabs weighing between 10.5kg and 13.8kg.
As Mr Raju lay bleeding, Periyasamy rummaged through his pockets and fled with his mobile phone.
By 2.38am, CCTV footage from Tanglin HQ showed Periyasamy hurrying back in the opposite direction.
Describing the viciousness of the attack, Deputy Public Prosecutor April Phang said: "(Mr Raju's) last moments must have been of terror and pain in the dead of the night, in the secluded Kampong Java Flyover."
When Mr Raju body was discovered, he was already decomposing. An autopsy showed that he had died of blunt force trauma to the head.
Periyasamy was arrested at Serangoon Plaza on Feb 12, 2012. He had Mr Raju's ez-link card and mobile phone with him.
During investigations, he was uncooperative, insisting his restraints be removed during a crime scene visit.
While being transported in a police van, he kicked the investigating officer, threatening to injure himself. He also accused police officers of assaulting him.
In addition, he threatened a psychiatrist during his assessment.
In mitigation, defence lawyers Sunil Sudheesan and Diana Ngiam cited the psychiatrist report which said that Periyasamy has low brain function, and his reasoning abilities fall in the range of "mild mental retardation to borderline level".
He was also troubled by problems back in India.
Justice Tay Yong Kwang sentenced Periyasamy to 16 years' jail and 12 strokes of the cane.
Two charges of criminal breach of trust and one charge of attacking a public servant were taken into consideration.
Periyasamy Devarajan and his victim, Mr Raju Arivazhagen, did not know each other. But a series of coincidences on Feb 7, 2012, and the early hours of Feb 8 resulted in Mr Raju's death. His body was discovered nearly two days later. when it was starting to decompose.
Has a few drinks with friends after temple visit
Friend accompanies him to Dorset Road where he gets into a taxi
Tells friend he is in taxi but gets off shortly after to look for missing wallet
Meets brother around Tekka market for drinks
Brother accompanies him to Little India MRT Station
Seen leaving station and walking towards a football field. Finds a wallet along the way. Wallet belonged to Mr Raju Arivazhagen
THE TWO MEET
1.11am to 2.32am
Mr Raju runs into Periyasamy and asks if he had seen his wallet. Periyasamy says yes
2.32am to 2.38am
Periyasamy robs and attacks Mr Raju, leaving him under the flyover
CCTV footage from Tanglin Police Divisional Headquarters show them walking towards Kampong Java Flyover
CCTV footage shows Periyasamy walking briskly in the opposite direction