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Two men jailed for attempting to depart Singapore illegally via Woodlands checkpoint

SINGAPORE — Two Indonesian men were convicted yesterday (June 4) of attempting to depart Singapore illegally via the Woodlands Checkpoint in a Malaysian-registered sedan car.

Sofyan Soeb was convicted of trying to depart Singapore illegally via the Woodlands Checkpoint on June 4, 2015. He was found crouching inside the boot of a car. Photo: Immigration & Checkpoints Authority of Singapore

Sofyan Soeb was convicted of trying to depart Singapore illegally via the Woodlands Checkpoint on June 4, 2015. He was found crouching inside the boot of a car. Photo: Immigration & Checkpoints Authority of Singapore

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SINGAPORE — An overstayer who tried to sneak out of Singapore by hiding in a car boot and the driver of the Malaysia-registered saloon car, both Indonesians, were convicted yesterday (June 4).

Sofyan Soeb, 41, was found crouching in the car boot when Immigration and Checkpoints Authority officers carried out checks at the Woodlands Checkpoint on May 21 at about 9.40pm.

He was sentenced to three months’ imprisonment and three strokes of the cane for overstaying in Singapore and failing to present his passport to an immigration officer when leaving Singapore.

The 48-year-old driver, Hasan Maksum, was sentenced to two years’ jail and three strokes of the cane for his attempt at sneaking Sofyan out of Singapore.

The vehicle used has been detained and is liable for forfeiture, said the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) in a statement released today.

The ICA added that it takes a serious view of attempts to overstay, enter or depart Singapore illegally.

“Our borders are our first line of defence in safeguarding Singapore’s security. The enhanced security checks are critical to our nation’s security. We have tightened our security checks in passengers and vehicles at the checkpoints to prevent attempts to smuggle in undesirable persons, drugs, weapons, explosives and other contrabands,” said the ICA.

The maximum penalty for overstaying or illegal entry is a jail term of up to six months and three strokes caning. For conveying prohibited immigrants into and out of Singapore, one could be jailed between two and five years and caned at least three times. 

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