It breaks my heart

It breaks my heart
 

SINGAPORE - He thought the victim in the video looked familiar, but he was uncertain.

Was that his cousin who was physically abused by a co-worker in his office?

Abusive boss punched, pushed, slapped intern

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    An IT company manager who carried out a campaign of abuse against an intern was yesterday sentenced to a 10-day short detention order.

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    The community sentence is served in prison, but carries no criminal record.

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    A judge said that Lee Yew Nam, 45, the manager of Encore eServices, had used 32-year-old Calvin Chan Meng Hock like a "punching bag" - slapping and hitting him during a string of violent outbursts when he felt his work was not up to standard.

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    He was caught when another intern took a 17-second video of him hitting Mr Chan, and posted it online.

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    Lee was convicted of four charges of causing hurt to Mr Chan at his Jurong Town Hall Road office between January and May 2013.

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    Two other charges of causing hurt and using abusive words were considered in sentencing.

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    The victim.

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    The victim speaking to a reporter.

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    A relative of the victim speaking to a reporter.

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    The family had previously asked for $100,000 in compensation.

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    The court was told that in January 2013, Lee slapped Mr Chan once in the face for failing to neatly arrange several software files in a computer.

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    The following month, he punched Mr Chan in the face several times, then pushed him off his chair, as he believed the intern had failed to correctly answer a customer's request.

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    On May 14, 2013, Lee grabbed Mr Chan's chin and forcefully pulled it back after finding out he had forgotten to delete files from a database.

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    The abuse that was caught on camera took place the next day, after Lee went through a conversation log between Mr Chan and a customer.

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    Some netizens who are more sceptical have pointed out that it is unlikely for a person to remain quiet while being attacked.

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    Lee felt Mr Chan had failed to perform his work well, and questioned him. When Mr Chan gave him an explanation deemed unsatisfactory, he became increasingly agitated and started to shout at the younger man. Lee then punched him in the head before slapping him three times.

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    In passing sentence, District Judge Lim Tse Haw said the 10-day SDO imposed would be sufficient to deter like-minded employers from laying their hands on their employees.

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    He said in a description put up with the original post: "I had just started an internship and noticed my supervisor constantly bullying my co-worker in the workplace.

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    "A strong message must be conveyed to all employers that such brutish behaviour has no place in our civilised society," he said.

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    "It must be made clear to all employers that an employee, no matter how low his position in the company is, is an important member of the company and not a punching bag, not even for stressed-out employers."

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    The judge considered Lee's clean record, his plea of guilt, albeit at a late stage on the first day of his trial, his $5,000 voluntary compensation and the fact that he was suffering from a depressive disorder.

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    However, he said he could not ignore the fact that what Lee had done was a serious matter. "As a responsible employer, he has a duty to have regard for the well-being and welfare of his employees.

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    "Instead, he subjected the victim to physical hurt and verbal abuse on numerous occasions, once in 2010/2011, and five other occasions from January to May of 2013."

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    Lee's lawyer Diana Ngiam successfully applied for her client to start his sentence on April 8. The maximum penalty for causing hurt is two years in jail and a $5,000 fine.

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    A special hearing was held earlier this year to determine IT company manager Lee Yew Nam's sentence after he was convicted of four charges of physically abusing a subordinate several times in 2013.

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    The defence asserted that the 45-year-old was suffering from a major depressive disorder at the time, and that it contributed to his offending behaviour.

In the video, a man was seen hitting the victim repeatedly on the cheek, trying to provoke a response.

But when the victim kept silent, he threw three more quick blows, repeatedly asking: "Why didn't you report?"

The victim, believed to be a 29-year-old university student and an intern at the office, did not retaliate but sat quietly in his chair.

Another colleague is seen telling the man, who is believed to be a supervisor, to calm down.

The video, which was uploaded on Friday night on YouTube, went viral, catching many by surprise.

One of them was the victim's cousin, who eventually decided who it likely was and alerted the victim's parents.

The parents asked their son about it, but he denied it was him.

When they saw screengrabs of the video in the newspapers the next day, they asked him again and he admitted it was him.

Upset, the parents accompanied their son to his office in Jurong West on Monday morning and confronted the supervisor, who apologised profusely, reported Shin Min Daily News.

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