Security guard jailed for cheating

Security guard jailed for cheating

Taking advantage of a young couple he caught getting intimate at a staircase landing, a condominium security guard lied that they had been caught on camera and offered to destroy his "recording device" if they paid him.

Nagindran Dharmiah, 32, took $1,000 in "compensation" from the girl but she reported him to the police after he asked for another $850 the next day, in the incident in March last year.

There was no camera installed at the staircase landing. The device Nagindran had shown the couple was a clocking device for recording his progress at work.

Yesterday, the permanent resident from Malaysia was jailed for two months after pleading guilty to two counts of cheating the girl.

A third count, for getting her boyfriend to hand over his mobile phone as collateral until full compensation had been made, was taken into consideration.

The court heard that around 10.30pm on March 31 last year, the girl admitted to Nagindran that her partner was not a resident at the condominium in the east, after the guard had confronted them.

Nagindran said the boyfriend was trespassing. He claimed they had been filmed and that his supervisor had asked for them to be taken to the guardhouse.

Nagindran also threatened to call the police and the couple's parents.

He showed them his clocking device and claimed their actions could be replayed if it were "plugged... into the CCTV camera".

The couple, both 19, pleaded with him to let them off and asked to speak to his supervisor. This was when Nagindran suggested destroying the device and letting them off.

After receiving $1,000, he took down the girl's number and deleted a photograph he had taken of them with his phone.

He was arrested the next day, after meeting her and receiving another $50.

Defence counsel Ravinderpal Singh said his client, now an operations manager in a company that deals with cleaning services, had acted on the spur of the moment to benefit financially.

The lawyer said Nagindran supports a young son and wife back in Malaysia, as well as his mother, whom he lives with here. He added that Nagindran had paid back the sum involved in full.

For each count of cheating his victims into handing over their property, Nagindran could have been jailed for 10 years and fined.

pohian@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on Jan 06, 2015.
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