Hit-and-run accused says he has never driven his Maserati
He told court he never saw the car before buying it and did not test-drive it
A Maserati owner, accused of a hit-and-run accident in Bedok Reservoir Road involving a police officer, told a district court yesterday he was not at the wheel of the car during the incident on Nov 17, 2017.
Lee Cheng Yan told District Judge Ng Peng Hong: "I did not touch the car that day at all."
The 35-year-old Singaporean had been disqualified from driving all classes of vehicles from July 2017 till April 2018 over earlier traffic offences. But before the end of the driving ban, he bought the seven-year-old Maserati for $175,000 on Nov 9, 2017.
He claimed he never saw the car before he bought it and never drove it, not even for a test drive. The Maserati was not valuable to him as it was "an old car", he told the court.
Lee said that about two hours before the accident, he had given the car keys to a man known only as "Kelvin", whom he had known for about five months.
He loaned the Maserati "reluctantly" to Kelvin whom he did not know "that well", the court heard.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Senthilkumaran Sabapathy questioned the existence of Kelvin and told Lee: "You are obviously lying."
Lee, however, insisted he was telling the truth.
Lee also said Kelvin was wearing a white top and checked shorts on the day of the accident. When the DPP pointed out that he was wearing a similar-looking outfit, Lee said Kelvin's top was "pure white" while his had "luminous" parts.
Lee had told the authorities that Kelvin was "1.8 metres tall, fair and skinny". When he was asked by the DPP if the description fits himself as well, Lee replied "yes" but stressed they have different faces.
The court heard that neither Kelvin's surname nor address was given by Lee to the investigation officer. The only personal detail he gave was Kelvin's mobile phone number.
It was not stated in court where Kelvin is now and he will not be testifying in court.
Lee is claiming trial to 10 charges related to the accident, which happened around 9.20pm on Nov 17, 2017.
He told Judge Ng that after handing Kelvin the car keys, he went for dinner before taking a taxi to meet his friend, marketing executive Jeff Chan.
Lee said he arrived at Mr Chan's Kallang Bahru flat around 9pm and later received a call from another friend about an online video showing his car being involved in a hit-and-run accident.
After watching the video, he said Mr Chan told him to contact the police.
He also said Mr Chan told him to change his T-shirt to "avoid unnecessary misunderstandings" and handed him one to wear. He put it on and threw away his own T-shirt.
Last week, Mr Chan told the court a different account, stating that Lee was the one who had asked to borrow a T-shirt.
Lee is out on a $60,000 bail and the case has been adjourned to Dec 4. If convicted of causing grievous hurt to the policeman, he can be jailed for up to 15 years and fined or caned.