Eight cleared of role in dorm fight

Eight workers from Bangladesh who had been charged with rioting at their dormitory were yesterday cleared.

In total, 11 Bangladeshi workers have been acquitted - three were earlier given a discharge amounting to an acquittal during a pre-trial conference.

The prosecution withdrew the rioting charge against each of the eight, aged between 26 and 38.

They had been accused of being part of an unlawful assembly with six fellow countrymen to cause hurt to three Indian nationals at the Homestay Residence Dormitory on March 25.

Two of the three Indian nationals - Dharmaraj Ramesh, 25, and Arumugam Velmurugan, 27 - have been sentenced to two weeks and one week in jail respectively, for using criminal force.

The third - Vengai Malar Mannan, 33 - was given a discharge amounting to an acquittal.

The two groups were among 35 foreign workers who were arrested after a mass brawl broke out that night at the dormitory in Kaki Bukit Avenue 3.

Police had said the fight took place during a live cricket match screening between Bangladesh and the West Indies.

The violence apparently erupted after Bangladesh lost the game.

The maximum penalty for rioting is seven years' jail and caning.


This article was published on May 21 in The Straits Times.

Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to straitstimes.com for more stories.