Man, 49, held in connection with assault on teen blogger

Man, 49, held in connection with assault on teen blogger
Amos Yee holding his face after he was slapped outside the State Courts on Thursday.

A 49-YEAR-OLD man has been arrested in connection with an assault on teenage blogger Amos Yee outside the State Courts on Thursday.

Yee, in trouble for his allegedly offensive online postings, was slapped on the face by a man outside the courts, in an attack that was captured on video and widely shared online.

"In response to media queries, the police confirm that a 49-year-old man was arrested in relation to the case," the police said in a statement yesterday, adding that investigations are ongoing.

The police had earlier said that a report had been lodged against the man who slapped Yee, 16.

Yee had been walking on his own to the State Courts for a pre-trial conference on Thursday when a man in a red polo shirt and cargo pants sneaked up and struck him hard on the left cheek, startling passers-by.

The attacker yelled "Sue me! Come and sue me!" before fleeing. A stunned Yee held his face as he walked into the State Courts building.

Law Minister K. Shanmugam has called the assault "unacceptable".

Yee is currently in remand.

On March 31, he was charged with attacking Christianity, transmitting an obscene image and making an online video which included offensive remarks about the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew.

The prosecution has stood down the last charge for now.

On March 27, Yee posted the eight-minute video on YouTube and was arrested three days later. He was bailed out on April 21 by a youth counsellor, but was sent back to Changi Prison on Thursday for breaching the bail conditions.

Yee had been warned against posting anything online. But on Wednesday, he put up two vulgarity-laced posts on his blog.

At his pre-trial conference, he refused to take down the posts and the judge raised his bail from $20,000 to $30,000.

No one posted bail and he was sent back to remand.

mellinjm@sph.com.sg

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