$7,000 fine for 14 parking offences too high, says guilty motorist
Judge also says numerous adjournments given to man guilty of 14 parking offences
A man who was found guilty of 14 parking offences is trying to appeal against his sentence of a $7,000 fine.
Gabriel Ravi Janageran pleaded guilty to 14 offences under the Parking Places Act between 2011 and 2014.
This includes 11 counts of parking in a place other than a parking lot, one count of parking in a season parking place, one count of obstructive parking and one count of parking with expired coupons.
Earlier this month, he was fined $7,000.
In mitigation, he said he has four children and is the sole breadwinner, working two jobs to sustain the family. He pleaded for leniency and a light fine.
But District Judge Sarah Tan Yin Tze said in her judgment that the accused's financial circumstances did not have any "significant bearing as a mitigating factor".
AT COURT'S DISCRETION
"It is settled law that financial difficulties is a legitimate mitigating factor only in very exceptional or extreme circumstances and the weight attributed to it was at the court's discretion," she said.
She pointed out that Gabriel had been granted four adjournments - three times in the Night Court, which deals with summonses and notices issued by government departments as well as road traffic offences, and once in the State Court, after the case was transferred from the Night Court.
"...The accused had been granted numerous adjournments, at his request or otherwise... to allow him, inter alia, the opportunity to raise funds for the court fines," she said.
Adding that each conviction for a first-time offence would warrant a fine of between $600 and $800 and a default sentence of two to four days, Judge Tan said Gabriel's sentence is "not unreasonable or excessive".
"Taking a step back for a holistic perspective, (a) total fine of S$7,000.00 for the 14 charges is also not crushing.
"I was of the view that a default term of one day's imprisonment per charge is appropriate, amounting to an aggregate default term of 14 days' imprisonment," she said.
The accused is now out on bail pending appeal.