Amos Yee: I knew what I did was offensive but...
Teen blogger pleads not guilty to two charges, says earlier that he is not remorseful of actions
Even before he uploaded his rant-filled video on the Internet, blogger Amos Yee Pang Sang, 16, said he knew its contents were offensive.
In his statement to the police, which was admitted to the court on the first day of his trial yesterday, he said he was also aware that the contents "would promote feelings of disharmony or feelings of ill-will within the Christian community".
But he went ahead because "promoting ill-will is a prerogative for positive change to happen in society, especially if the issue at hand were initially controversial," the teenager said in the statement, which had been written on March 30.
At 11.10am yesterday, Yee appeared in the packed courtroom in handcuffs and leg restraints. Dressed in a white T-shirt with brown trousers, he appeared calm as he made his way to the dock.
His former bailor, youth and family counsellor Vincent Law, and his parents were in the public gallery.
The New Paper also spotted blogger Roy Ngerng and former political detainee Teo Soh Lung sitting nearby.
Yesterday in court, Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Hay Hung Chun told District Judge Jasvender Kaur that the prosecution will be proceeding on two of the three charges against Yee.
They are the charges of transmitting an obscene picture electronically, and uploading content online which contained remarks against Christianity.
The third charge under the Protection from Harassment Act, accusing him of posting an insulting video clip online containing remarks about former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, was stood down.
The two proceeded charges were read to Yee and he pleaded not guilty to both of them.
He also told Judge Kaur that he would not be giving evidence in court.
But his police statement provided details. In it, he said he had no intention of removing any of the videos that he had made.
He said: "I refuse to do this because it would not appease the public, as the video and posts will continue to be circulated, and also because doing so would suggest that I was sorry for the videos and my post, which I am not."
In his statement, Yee also said that he is not remorseful for his actions.
He added in the statement that he is currently in the process of writing a script for a new Lee Kuan Yew video.
He said the unfinished script is saved on his computer's hard drive, which was seized by police for investigations.
He said: "I have not decided on whether I wish to continue work on that script idea, especially since I am unaware of the exact legal consequences of releasing a new video about Lee Kuan Yew."
Yee's case will resume today for his legal team, made up of Mr Alfred Dodwell, Mr Chong Jia Hao and Mr Ervin Tan, and the prosecution to make their submissions.
If convicted of uploading content online which contained remarks against Christianity, Yee can be jailed for up to three years and fined.
If convicted of transmitting an obscene image electronically, he can be jailed for up to three months and fined.
"I refuse to do this because it would not appease the public, as the video and posts will continue to be circulated, and also because doing so would suggest that I was sorry for the videos and my post, which I am not."
- Amos Yee on why he won't take down his videos