Woman jailed for starting fire after husband said he wanted divorce
A woman who found out her husband wanted a divorce caused a fire in their matrimonial home on the 13th storey of a Bedok North block of flats, resulting in more than $17,000 in damage.
The fire, which started from a lit cigarette, also caused the evacuation of residents from 20 units in the 10th to 14th storeys of the block. No one was injured in the blaze.
Malisah Mohammad Said, 31, was sentenced yesterday to five months' jail after admitting to a mischief charge.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Samuel Chew said the couple had been living separately before the incident following an argument.
Court documents did not give details of their dispute.
Malisah was at home around 12.30pm on July 15 last year when she received a voice message from her husband telling her he wanted a divorce.
She replied that she would move out.
At around 5pm, she smoked a cigarette in the master bedroom.
The court heard that pieces of drawing paper belonging to her eight-year-old daughter from her previous marriage were scattered on the bed at the time.
The DPP said: "After the accused was done smoking, she flicked the lit cigarette towards the en suite bathroom of the master bedroom.
"The accused saw the lit cigarette land on the mattress of the bed. The accused also saw smoke rising from the mattress and that the lit cigarette was starting to burn the said mattress."
Despite knowing the cigarette could cause a fire to break out, Malisah left the flat without extinguishing it because she wanted to get back at her husband.
About 10 minutes later, the police and the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) were alerted by members of the public that a fire had broken out in the flat.
SCDF officers were deployed to the scene and Malisah's neighbours had to be evacuated.
The fire was put out around 5.45pm, the court heard. By then, it had caused $16,820 worth of damage to the flat.
The blaze also damaged a neighbour's air-conditioning unit, which cost $300 to repair.
For mischief, an offender can be jailed for up to seven years and fined.