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Cleaner killed by man who hijacked cab

An Indian man was killed at Budget Terminal airport after a Chinese national assaulted a taxi driver and hijacked the cab. -AsiaOne

Sat, Mar 17, 2012
AsiaOne

SINGAPORE - A man died on Saturday morning after he was hit by a hijacked taxi at the driveway in front of the Budget Terminal.

The 34-year-old Indian man, Mr Chandra Mogan, a cleaner on duty at the airport, was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics at 7.13am.

The police received a call at about 6.50am regarding an assault by a 30-year-old Chinese national passenger on a 57-year-old taxi driver along the stretch of Airport Boulevard in front of SATS In-flight Catering Centre 1.

The passenger, who was headed for Changi Airport, started getting violent towards taxi driver Yeow Chuwee Lam during the journey, said a statement released by Comfort Delgro.

The taxi driver later activated the distress button and got out of the cab.

According to Comfort Delgro spokesperson Tammy Tan, the passenger had also stepped out and allegedly started to attack the driver.

Police said the passenger was later seen taking over the wheel and driving the taxi towards the direction of the Budget Terminal.

The taxi hit Mr Mogan along the driveway of the terminal and smashed into a glass side door next to McDonald's. A traffic light was also badly damaged.

A spokesperson from the Singapore Civil Defence Force said they received a call at about 6.52am and one ambulance was dispatched.

The injured Chinese national suffered from head abrasions and was conveyed to Changi General Hospital.

According to reports, he will be charged with voluntarily causing hurt in committing robbery.

The charge is to be read out to the suspect in the hospital he is warded in. 

Witnesses said the man had tried to flee but was stopped by passers-by. He was detained at the scene and police investigations are still ongoing.

If convicted, he faces a jail sentence between five to 20 years and at least 12 strokes of the cane.

The chain of events that led to the tragic death began with Yeow picking up the Chinese national at Still Road in the Katong area, The Straits Times (ST) reported.

The passenger said he was going to Changi Airport to catch a flight back home to China.

Yeow said the man seemed to be in a good mood and talked about being happy to see his family again.

However, along Airport Boulevard, the passenger suddenly snapped and accused the cabby of hiding his belongings.

He insisted that Yeow stop the cab and take out his belongings which he said Yeow hid. Yeow tried to reassure the man that he did not steal anything, but the man continued to repeat his demand in Chinese.

The man became aggressive and hit the cabby near his neck and ear.

The cabby then stopped the taxi and pressed the distress button to call for help. He then tried to exit the taxi to escape from the violent man, but did not manage to do so before he was pushed out of the car onto the road.

The man then began attacking Yeow, before getting into the taxi and driving off.

Eyewitnesses say they saw the taxi heading unsteadily to the airport.

According to eye-witnesses, Mr Mogan was walking towards the McDonald's outlet at the terminal when he was hit, throwing him to the ground and scattering his cleaning supplies.

The 21-year-old air stewardess who gave her name as Ms Nur said Mr Morgan was knocked down in a split second.

The victim, who worked for Chye Thiam Maintenance has four children, aged between three months and 10 years, who are living in Johor.

His wife works at Changi Airport Terminal 2, and arrived at the scene later to identify the body.

Investigations are ongoing.

klim@sph.com.sg

yamadak@sph.com.sg

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