Shanmugam: AGC looking into MMA instructor's case
While there has been "public disquiet" on the jail sentence of American mixed martial arts instructor Joshua Robinson, who was sentenced last Thursday, Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam said it was inappropriate for him to comment at this time.
"I personally should not be commenting, because the matter is not concluded, as time for appeal has not ended," he said at the sidelines of a fund-raising cycling event yesterday.
"I can understand that there is public disquiet on the sentence. People are naturally upset. Parents in particular. The decisions on which charges to proceed is a matter within AGC's (the Attorney-General's Chambers) discretion.
"AGC makes the decisions based on precedents, and what kind of sentence is meted out depends on previous cases. Having said that, my understanding is that AGC is looking into this."
Robinson, 39, had unprotected sex with two 15-year-old girls, filmed the acts with his mobile phone and showed an obscene clip to a girl who was six years old.
He also possessed 321 films containing child pornography with children as young as two.
It is believed to be the largest number of such films seized from a single person in Singapore.
He was sentenced to four years' jail last week, a ruling that sparked much public discussion.
Last Friday, the six-year-old girl's father expressed his disappointment in a Facebook post - which has since been taken down.
He described Robinson's jail term as "a slap on the wrist".
An online petition against the sentence started on Sunday has attracted more than 10,000 signatures as of last night.
Some called for Robinson to be caned, but the law states that only an accused who has sex with a minor under 14 is liable to be caned and jailed up to 20 years with fine.
He had faced up to 10 years jail with fine for each charge of having sex with the two teen girls.
The prosecution, in its submissions, had asked for Robinson to be jailed between four and five years.