Reformative training sought for Amos Yee

Reformative training sought for Amos Yee

Teenage blogger Amos Yee was back in court yesterday for an urgent hearing, after he refused to meet his assigned probation officer.

He also made public a blog post containing an obscene image and a YouTube video containing remarks intending to hurt the feelings of Christians, for which he was convicted on May 12.

Yee, 16, had made both the video and the blog private after District Judge Jasvender Kaur ordered him to do so, as a consequence of the convictions.

The judge also called for a report to assess Yee's suitability for probation.

But Yee has refused to attend any interviews with the assigned probation officer and has informed the judge that he does not want probation.

Yee's parents have also declined to meet the probation officer, given that the teenager is not keen on probation.

It also came to the prosecution's attention that on May 21, the video and post had been made public again.

In court and behind closed doors yesterday, Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Hay Hung Chun asked Judge Kaur to call for a report to assess Yee's suitability for reformative training.

A jail term or a fine would have no rehabilitative effect on Yee, he said.

DPP Hay told reporters: "This is clearly a misguided youth who seeks attention by deliberately posting provocative content, who has no insight into his offending behaviour, and who is likely to keep repeating this pattern of conduct."

Reformative training is a rehabilitative sentencing option for young offenders aged under 21 who are found to be unsuitable for probation.

A stint at the Reformative Training Centre lasts between 18 and 30 months. Offenders will not have contact with adult prison inmates.

Yee's lawyers requested time to take instructions from him.

His case will be heard again on Tuesday.

Yee and his parents declined to give comments when approached.

amirh@sph.com.sg


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