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Man charged with animal cruelty over Ang Mo Kio cat slashing, held for psychiatric observation

​SINGAPORE — A 37-year-old man was charged with animal cruelty on Wednesday (June 9) in relation to a series of cat slashings in Ang Mo Kio that started in late April.

Cats were found with slash wounds in the Ang Mo Kio area.

Cats were found with slash wounds in the Ang Mo Kio area.

SINGAPORE — A 37-year-old man was charged with animal cruelty on Wednesday (June 9) in relation to a series of cat slashings in Ang Mo Kio that started in late April.

Leow Wei Liang, a Singaporean, was handed one charge of causing unnecessary pain and suffering to an animal under Section 42(1)(d) of the Animals and Birds Act.

Based on court documents, he allegedly used a penknife to slash the body of a white feline with grey patches on the morning of May 2. This happened at the staircase of a multi-storey car park at Block 352A Ang Mo Kio Street 32.

The Animal and Veterinary Service (AVS), a unit of the National Parks Board (NParks), arrested Leow with the police’s help on Tuesday for his alleged involvement in the slashings.

He appeared in court via video link from the Central Police Division. 

Despite several police officers telling him to stand up, he refused to show his face but he was heard moaning throughout the five-minute hearing.

A police officer told District Judge Marvin Bay: “He’s refusing to listen to our instructions.”

NParks prosecutor Packer Mohammad asked that Leow be held at the Institute of Mental Health for psychiatric assessment. 

The judge granted the request, saying that there was “ample reason” to do so.

Leow will return to court on June 23.

If convicted, he could face a jail term of up to one-and-a-half years or a fine of up to S$15,000, or both.

In a case that drew public ire, 10 cats were found injured with deep linear cuts in Ang Mo Kio, TODAY reported last month. 

The attacks happened in an area bounded by Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8 and Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1.

At present, Leow does not face charges in relation to the other cats that were hurt. 

As a result of the attacks, animal advocates had placed some cats from the neighbourhood in boarding facilities in Lim Chu Kang and at The Animal Lodge, a facility in Sungei Tengah for animal welfare groups, independent shelters and pet farms.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Cat Welfare Society led efforts to track down the culprit by distributing flyers and putting up posters in the neighbourhood.

The Ang Mo Kio Town Council also said that it alerted the area’s cleaners to keep a lookout and make a report to AVS, should they witness acts of animal cruelty.

Ms Jessica Kwok, NParks’ group director of community animal management, said on Tuesday that safeguarding animal welfare was a shared social responsibility.

The public may report suspected cases of animal cruelty to AVS via its website at www.avs.gov.sg/feedback or call its Animal Response Centre at 1800 476 1600. 

She said that all forms of evidence were critical to the investigation process, and proof by way of photos and videos would help.

“Information shared with AVS will be kept strictly confidential.” 

Related topics

animal cruelty Ang Mo Kio cats AVS court crime

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