'I was shocked to find a cleaver against my neck'

Fear: Cabby Pang Tee Ann showing what happened to him. -TNP

SINGAPORE - A taxi driver who turned around to ask for the cab fare suddenly felt and saw a cleaver pressed against his neck. The cleaver was held by his passenger.

Mr Pang Tee Ann, 63, had picked up the passenger from Geylang Lorong 15 at around 4am on Wednesday, reported Shin Min Daily News.

He stopped his taxi at Eunos MRT Station to let the passenger off.

"When I stopped the meter and turned around to ask for the cab fare, I was shocked to find a cleaver against my neck," said Mr Pang, who was shaking in fear when the passenger told him not to make any sudden movements.

He told Shin Min that the passenger said: "I just want money, I don't want to hurt you. I have no choice."

So he took out around $50 and passed it to the man. But the man told him that it was not enough and asked for more.

Mr Pang felt the cleaver pressed even more firmly against his neck.

He was worried that the man would hurt him, so he opened his wallet and gave the man all the money he had, around $280.

"He took the money, got out of the taxi and walked casually towards the MRT.

"I locked the taxi doors and when he was a distance away, I called the police," said Mr Pang.

It was only after the police arrived that Mr Pang found out that another taxi driver had been robbed of $14, at 11pm the day before.

Mr Pang described his attacker as a tall, fair man in his 40s wearing a black shirt.

He said the police told him the attacker's description was similar to the man in the earlier incident.

Update: Serial taxi robber arrested in three days

How could they be so violent towards a weak old man? 

SINGAPORE - Five men beat up a CityCab taxi driver and robbed him of his phone after he refused to take them all in his cab at Geylang.

The taxi driver was left with bruises and fractures on the left side of his face and left arm.

His assailants fled after the beating.

The driver's son, who wanted to be known only as Mr Ng, said the men wanted to board his father's taxi, despite the four passenger rule, at Geylang Lorong 11 at around 1.15am on Wednesday.

Mr Ng, 35, told Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao: "Taxis can send only four people at a time. My dad lowered his window to tell them that he couldn't take all of them."

One of the men became agitated and shouted that they were in a hurry and that they had to get into the taxi, Mr Ng said.

Angry, the men, who were all dressed in black, started kicking the taxi and even broke the side view mirror.

Mr Ng said his father took out his mobile phone and threatened to call the police if they did not stop.

One of the men snatched his father's phone and when Mr Ng's father stepped out of the taxi to take it back, he was punched repeatedly.

The men kept hitting him until a passer-by yelled "stop" and ran over to help him.

The group fled with the taxi driver's phone and Mr Ng's father was left with a bruised face and left arm.

Mr Ng said his father did not want to go to the hospital and instead drove back to their home and rested in the taxi.

He told Wanbao: "When I went to take over my father's shift for taxi driving, my father was lying in the taxi with a bloodied shirt. I was shocked."

Mr Ng immediately drove his father to Changi General Hospital and found out about the fractures.

The doctor gave Mr Ng's father a week of medical leave.

At around 5pm on the same day, they made a police report at a police station near their home.

When The New Paper contacted Mr Ng, he said: "I was concerned for his safety because I didn't want to lose my father over a job. I hope that the police increase street patrols so that this will not happen again."

NOT EASY

He added: "How could they be so violent towards a weak old man? They should be punished."

Mr Ng said that although it was his father's first time experiencing such a violent incident, he was used to difficult customers.

He said: "Taxi driving isn't an easy job. I want people to know that taxi drivers shouldn't be bullied."

A few hours before and after Mr Ng's father was attacked, two other taxi drivers were robbed.

A police spokesman said there had been several police reports of robberies in which taxi drivers were targeted, between Tuesday and Thursday, but was unable to confirm the number by press time. Police are investigating.


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