Youths' plan to rob cabby goes awry

Youths' plan to rob cabby goes awry
Taxis in Singapore.

SINGAPORE - The three youths had their scheme to rob a taxi driver all planned out - one would grab his neck from behind, the second would assault him, and the third would grab the money.

They would then flee.

However, things did not go according to plan when they carried it out at about 1.50am along Japanese Garden Road on Feb 2.

The coin pouch the teenagers managed to snatch contained only $5. Worse, one of them left his iPhone in the car. He went to the police to report it as missing, in a bid to "avoid being traced".

Yesterday, Muhammad Fauzi Fitri Kamaruzaman, 18, and Muhammad Aizan Abdullah, 17, were each sentenced to two years of probation after pleading guilty to robbing Mr Abdul Latiff Ismail, 53.

The duo were also each ordered to perform 150 hours of community service. Their parents also had to sign a $5,000 bond to ensure their good behaviour.

A pre-trial conference has been fixed for Monday for their accomplice, Muhammad Istiqlal Hamdan, 17.

A community court had heard that the trio boarded Mr Abdul Latiff's vehicle with the intention of robbing him. They told him to go to Lakeside MRT station, but later redirected him to the skate park near the Chinese Garden.

When the vehicle arrived at the skate park, Fauzi, who was seated directly behind the driver, grabbed his neck. Aizan punched his face three or four times, while Istiqlal grabbed his coin pouch.

But while fleeing the scene, Fauzi realised he had left his iPhone in the taxi.

Istiqlal suggested that he report his phone as lost, presumably so he could claim he was not the one who had left it in the cab.

Following the advice, Fauzi later left his wallet, spectacles and watch with Aizan. He went to a police station and said he had been assaulted, and his belongings were missing. The trio were arrested later that day.

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