SINGAPORE - Faced with the possibility of a $150 fine and six demerit points for driving his Mercedes-Benz in a careless manner, 69-year-old Ang Tiong first pleaded for leniency with the traffic cop issuing the summons.
When that failed, the vice- chairman of Glit Holdings, an apparel supplier, then offered the officer a job in his company. For that offer, the businessman, who pleaded guilty, was sentenced to a week in jail on Tuesday, despite his lawyer Jason Lim arguing for just a hefty fine.
In passing sentence, District Judge Lee Poh Choo said the integrity of the police force was essential, and it was in the public interest that offenders be deterred from making such offers to the police, especially to traffic cops, for doing their job.
The incident involving Ang, who could have been fined up to $100,000 and/or jailed for up to five years for corruption, took place on March 12.
That afternoon, Corporal Jeremy Seet Ban Kok caught Ang driving his black Mercedes-Benz carelessly along MacPherson Road and signalled for him to pull over.
After handing over his driving licence, Ang told Cpl Seet that he knew he did wrong and was sorry, saying he was in a rush to attend a meeting with an American company.
He then pleaded for a chance, but Cpl Seet said he would be serving him with a summons, and the penalty for the offence was a $150 fine and six demerit points.
On hearing that, Ang explained how he had been issued with a summons recently and had accumulated 12 demerit points. He urged Cpl Seet to serve him with a summons for any other offence which did not attract demerit points, but was told this was not possible.
Ang then said since they were both Chinese, they "should help each other".
Subsequently, when Ang got his licence back, he grabbed Cpl Seet's wrist, took out his name card and insisted that he accept it. He told the corporal he could give him a job in his company, where he employs more than 100 workers. He also said that no one would know if Cpl Seet did not serve him the summons.
Cpl Seet reported the bribery incident to his operations room immediately.
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