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S’porean youth gets 9 months’ probation for sending death threat to English Premier League player

SINGAPORE — An Arsenal Football Club supporter was sentenced to nine months of probation on Wednesday (July 7) for harassing English Premier League footballer Neal Maupay last year including sending death threats to him and his family.

Derek Ng De Ren, 19, threatened Brighton & Hove Albion player Neal Maupay over Instagram: “Your family will be attacked later in the day just watch.”

Derek Ng De Ren, 19, threatened Brighton & Hove Albion player Neal Maupay over Instagram: “Your family will be attacked later in the day just watch.”

  • Derek Ng De Ren, 19, was upset over a Premier League match between Arsenal and Brighton & Hove Albion
  • The Arsenal fan sent Brighton footballer Neal Maupay four threatening messages via Instagram
  • Ng used anonymous accounts and threatened to kill Maupay and his family
  • A judge told Ng he could do well in life if he implemented some internal checks to regulate his emotions

 

SINGAPORE — An Arsenal Football Club supporter was sentenced to nine months of probation on Wednesday (July 7) for harassing English Premier League footballer Neal Maupay last year including sending death threats to him and his family. 

Singaporean Derek Ng De Ren, 19, became upset after Maupay, a French national player for Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club, tackled Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno during a match on June 20 last year.

Maupay went on to score the winning goal, causing Arsenal to lose 2-1 and Leno had to be taken off the pitch after suffering a serious knee injury.

Ng, who was a junior college student then, later used anonymous accounts on social network Instagram to send four threatening messages to Maupay over eight days.

Among the messages he sent was one that read: “Your family will be attacked later in the day just watch.”

Maupay, who believed Ng’s threats to be “legitimate and credible”, did not respond to the messages and he and his family did not leave their home as far as possible for fear of being attacked. 

A Premier League representative in Singapore filed a police report against Ng on Aug 11 last year after Maupay reported the threats to the league. 

Despite Instagram disabling Ng’s account as a result of the report, Ng went on to send another message to Maupay through another anonymous Instagram account where he said: “You think by reporting my account you’re safe? I will kill you and your family.”

Ng, who committed the acts from Singapore, pleaded guilty last month to two charges under the Protection from Harassment Act for using threatening words against the footballer. 

District Judge May Mesenas took into consideration two other similar charges for consideration.

Under the Act, offenders in Singapore who harass anyone overseas can be prosecuted here.

Probation is usually offered to first-time offenders between the ages of 16 and 21. It does not lead to a recorded criminal conviction and allows young offenders to carry on with their education or employment while serving their sentences.

Under his probation conditions, he will have to abide by a curfew of 10pm to 6am, undergo 40 hours of community service and attend any psychiatric or psychological treatment if necessary.

His mother also posted a S$5,000 bond to ensure his good behaviour during the period.

Before sentencing Ng, who is currently serving National Service, the judge told him that she hoped the “entire experience” in court had “made some impact”. 

She also said that being in remand for a week at the Reformative Training Centre, in order to prepare a suitability report, should have given him a taste of what it was like.

Reformative training, a regimented rehabilitation programme for young offenders who commit relatively serious crimes, is a more severe punishment.

Both the prosecution and defence ultimately sought probation after it was recommended by the probation officer.

District Judge Mesenas added: “While you’re very passionate about the sport, making threats because you’re unhappy about certain things and undergoing personal things, that’s not the way. I hope counselling helps you address all these issues.

“Even with a good NS record and excellent academic qualifications going forward, (these will) come to nothing if you don’t deal with these internal struggles.”

She also noted that his “trajectory”, as evidenced from the probation report, was “favourable” and that he could do well if he implemented “some internal checks to regulate your emotions”.

His lawyer, Mr Mark Yeo from Kalco Law, earlier said that Ng is currently undergoing counselling sessions.

Adult offenders convicted of using threatening words could face a jail term of up to six months or a fine of up to S$5,000, or both.

Related topics

crime court harassment English Premier League Neal Maupay Instagram

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