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Former ITE student admits to involvement in schoolmate’s knife attack on campus

SINGAPORE — A teenager admitted on Monday (Oct 25) to supplying his friend with a bread knife at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) College East to slash another student's head and arm at the school's car park earlier this year.

Former ITE student admits to involvement in schoolmate’s knife attack on campus
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  • An 18-year-old teenager admitted to his role in the slashing of a schoolmate on campus earlier this year
  • He had taken a bread knife to school which his friend used in the attack
  • Separately, the teenager also admitted to being involved in a robbery attempt in 2019
  • The judge called for reports to assess his suitability for probation as well as reformative training

 

SINGAPORE — A teenager admitted on Monday (Oct 25) to supplying his friend with a bread knife at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) College East to slash another student's head and arm at the school's car park earlier this year.

He was an ITE student at the time but has since transferred to a private tertiary school, his lawyer Josephus Tan told the court.

The 18-year-old pleaded guilty on Monday to one charge of abetting his schoolmate, 19-year-old Palanidas Ramadas, to voluntarily cause hurt to the victim with the knife, as well as one charge of conspiracy to commit robbery.

The teenager cannot be named because he was 16 years old when he conspired to commit the robbery in 2019.

SLASHING INCIDENT

The court heard on Monday that Palanidas had contacted the teenager on Feb 15 this year, telling him to take a knife to school because one of his friends had problems at school.

The teenager then carried the serrated knife along when he met Palanidas and a few other friends for supper at about 4am on Feb 16. \

Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Lim Shin Hui said that the teenager headed to ITE College East after the meal, 

Around noon that day, Palanidas told the teenager that the friend — for whom he had needed the knife — had “settled his issues”.

Yet, around the same time, Palanidas spotted a schoolmate at the canteen that he himself had “a problem with”. He then approached the schoolmate and told him to meet at the school’s car park.

Palanidas and the teenager then headed to the car park with a third accused person, 18-year-old Brian Lee Shze Jaet, who was also an ITE student. Palanidas made the teenager hand him the knife along the way.

Once they got to the car park, Palanidas began swinging and slashing the schoolmate with the knife several times.

DPP Lim said: “The (schoolmate) tried to run away behind a pillar in the car park, but Lee and the (teenager) approached the victim from the other direction and cornered the (schoolmate) while Palanidas chased and slashed the (schoolmate) again.” 

The victim then fled the school and returned home. He told his father that he had been attacked and sought treatment at the Changi General Hospital.

A medical report found that he had suffered deep cuts over the left shoulder and ear.

TODAY understands that the teenager, Palanidas and Lee were expelled by ITE after the incident.

ROBBERY

As for the 2019 robbery charge, the court heard that the teenager was involved in a conspiracy with four other accused persons to beat up and rob a man, identified by court documents as Mr Jatson Tan Ming Jie, now aged 28.

One of the accused persons, Aaron Lim Jun Ying, now 26, had lost money through online gambling and, as a result, owed Mr Tan more than S$80,000.

Lim then hatched a ruse for one of them, Chen Yongxian, now 23, to hand over S$20,000 to Mr Tan.

However, as part of the plan, three others including the teenager would then run over to beat Mr Tan up and retrieve the money. They would also pretend to beat Chen up to make it seem like Chen was not involved in the robbery.

They carried out the plan on Oct 16, 2019 at around midnight in a public housing estate in Pasir Ris, but were unable to grab the paper bag of money from Mr Tan before fleeing the scene when spotted by a passer-by.

Mr Tan, who also left the scene before the police arrived, suffered bruises on multiple parts of his body from the attack.

Court documents did not state whether the other accused persons have been, or will be, dealt with by the court.

SUITABILITY FOR PROBATION, REFORMATIVE TRAINING

On Monday, Mr Josephus Tan, the teenager’s lawyer, told the court that the teenager has since ceased contact with the “negative peers” who had gotten into trouble with him.

“We plead that this is a significant step in the right direction for (him) because we cannot help but notice... that (he) had seemingly always been the one to be roped in by his negative peers to participate in their offending,” the lawyer from Invictus Law Corporation said.

“Of course, let it be clear that we are not finding an excuse for (his) then-naive decisions to agree to be roped in or to become involved.”

District Judge May Mesenas granted Mr Tan’s request to call for a report to assess whether the teenager is suitable for probation.

However, she called for a second report to assess whether he is suitable for reformative training — a regimented rehabilitation programme for those under 21 who commit relatively serious crimes.

For abetting a voluntary assault with a knife, he could be jailed up to seven years as well as fined or caned, or sentenced to any combination of these punishments.

An offender who abets an attempted robbery and voluntarily causes hurt could be jailed between five and 20 years and be given no fewer than 12 strokes of the cane.

Related topics

crime court knife attack assault robbery ITE

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