Woman who was spat at 'lucky to be female'

Woman who was spat at 'lucky to be female'

THE man accused of repeatedly spitting at a woman at a bus interchange said that had she been a man, he would not have spat at her six times, but hit her six times.

Former technician Juraimi Kamaludin, who is unrepresented, told Ms Lee Kuan Eng this while cross-examining her, saying she was lucky she was a "lady".

"If you are a guy, I will not spit at you six times. I will whack you six times," Juraimi said on Monday.

The 48-year-old has claimed trial to five charges - being a public nuisance; spitting once at another commuter, 41-year-old customer service officer Teoh Lay Peng, and pushing her out of the bus; and two counts of spitting at Ms Lee within 10 minutes.

A video clip of the incident at Woodlands Regional Interchange on Oct 22 last year had at least 285,000 views on YouTube.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Francis Zhang Zeyi said in his opening that Juraimi and Ms Teoh were queueing to board SMRT Service 950 at about 9.30pm that day. He left the queue for a while and returned when the bus came.

The duo got into an argument when Ms Teoh accused him of cutting into the queue and complained to the bus driver. Juraimi then spat at her. After they boarded the bus, he pushed Ms Teoh out through the front door, said Mr Zhang. He then raised his voice and argued aggressively with other commuters, delaying the bus.

One of them, Ms Lee, got into a heated argument with Juraimi and called the police when the bus continued to be held up. The 34- year-old secretary said "bloody hell" very loudly, but clarified that it was not directed at Juraimi.

But Juraimi, who later alighted, thought she had scolded him and pulled her hand and blocked her path after she got off the bus.

She said Juraimi was very aggressive, and she pushed him away when his chest almost touched hers. She shouted: "Molest!"

Asked by Mr Zhang how many times Juraimi spat at her, Ms Lee said she did not count, but that it was more than two times.

It was Juraimi who revealed by a hand sign that it was six.

Asked how she felt about his actions, Ms Lee said as a Singaporean, he should not be behaving in such a way . "It is a disgrace," she said, accusing him of bullying.

Juraimi, in turn, accused Ms Lee of lying, insulting his mother and uttering a racial slur about him. Ms Lee denied his claims.

If convicted of using criminal force, he could be jailed for up to three months, fined up to $1,500 or both. The spitting charges fall under this. The maximum penalty for committing a rash act for pushing Ms Teoh is six months in jail and a $2,500 fine.

elena@sph.com.sg


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