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Jail for electrician who tried to bribe traffic police officer with ‘good price’ for services

SINGAPORE — After being caught behind the wheel while under a four-year driving ban, Leow Khoon Chye offered his services as an electrician at a “good price” several times to a traffic policeman if no enforcement action was taken against him.

Van driver Leow Khoon Chye admitted trying to bribe a traffic police officer, who pulled him over while patrolling the area on his motorcycle.

Van driver Leow Khoon Chye admitted trying to bribe a traffic police officer, who pulled him over while patrolling the area on his motorcycle.

SINGAPORE — After being caught behind the wheel while under a four-year driving ban, Leow Khoon Chye offered his services as an electrician at a “good price” several times to a traffic policeman if no enforcement action was taken against him.

Leow, 58, was jailed for 14 weeks on Monday (July 26) and further disqualified from holding all classes of licences for another eight years after he is released.

He pleaded guilty to one charge each of offering a bribe, driving while banned and driving without insurance. One other charge of failing to wear a seatbelt was taken into consideration for sentencing.

Leow owns a sole proprietorship — Proficient Electrical Engineering & Plumbing — that deals with electrical, construction and upgrading works, the court heard.

In 2018, he was jailed and banned from driving until March 2022 after being convicted of driving while under disqualification.

Then, on the morning of Feb 8 this year, Senior Staff Sergeant Firdaus Abdul Rahman spotted Leow driving without a seatbelt along Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5.

He began putting it on when he saw the officer.

Senior Staff Sergeant Firdaus then followed him to Ang Mo Kio Industrial Park 2. Leow proceeded to open his driver’s side door to speak to the officer, asking why he was stopped.

The officer replied that he saw Leow not wearing a seatbelt and asked for his driver’s licence. Leow said that he was under a driving “suspension” and pleaded for a chance, but the officer did not entertain this and asked for his National Identity Registration Card.

Leow was initially reluctant to hand it over, but eventually did so.

While the officer waited for his particulars to be screened at the traffic police operations room, Leow continued to plead with him.

He said, among other things: “Encik, tolong, tolong (Sir, please, please), I need to make a living. Don’t report; if you report, I need to go to court.”

He added that he only had a “few months to go” before he could take his driving practical test again.

He also said that he worked as an electrician and offered his services at a “good price” at least three times, which Senior Staff Sergeant Firdaus understood to mean a discounted price, Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Tay Jingxi told the court.

The officer ignored this and waited for backup to arrive. Leow was then arrested.

DPP Tay asked for at least 20 weeks’ jail and the driving ban imposed. Leow, who was not represented by a lawyer, pleaded for leniency and said that he earns only S$2,500 a month.

He repeatedly asked for the authorities to return his van, to which DPP Tay said that she would write to the traffic police to expedite the matter.

“I’m remorseful for what I’ve done but I need to earn a living to survive. Without a vehicle, I cannot do installations,” he added.

As a repeat offender, Leow could have been jailed for up to six years or fined up to S$20,000, or both.

He could also have been jailed for up to a year or fined up to S$100,000, or both, for his corruption offence.

Related topics

court crime bribe Traffic Police driving ban

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