SMRT train vandalism: 2nd pre-trial meet for German duo

SMRT train vandalism: 2nd pre-trial meet for German duo
Andreas Von Knorre (left) and Elton Hinz allegedly sprayed graffiti on an SMRT train at the Bishan depot between 2.48am and 3.29am on Nov 8.

Another pre-trial conference for the case of two Germans who allegedly vandalised an MRT train will be held on Jan 14.

Andreas Von Knorre and Elton Hinz, both 21, have been accused of entering SMRT's Bishan depot, a protected place, without authorisation three times in the wee hours of Nov 6, 7 and 8. 

They allegedly used indelible spray paint to spray graffiti on an SMRT train at the depot along Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1 between 2.48am and 3.29am on Nov 8.

Their lawyer, Mr Christopher Bridges, told reporters after yesterday's pre-trial conference that he will be making further representations to the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC).

The prosecution, he said, has offered to proceed on three of the four charges against his clients.

Mr Bridges said that so far, his instructions are "to take a certain course".

He has seen the duo twice in person and once over video link.

The pair, who were working in Australia, were on holiday here at the time of the alleged offences.

They are believed to have left Singapore for an unspecified destination on Nov 8. They were later located in Bangkok by the Thai police, and subsequently arrested at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport on Nov 20 by the Malaysian authorities and extradited to Singapore the next day.

The incident at the Bishan Depot on Nov 8 was the fourth case of vandalism at SMRT's depots since 2010, and the second this year. Earlier this month, SMRT said the size and location of its Bishan depot make the 30ha facility vulnerable to breaches.

The operator added that a network of canals and drains running below the depot is another source of vulnerability, and said it has been working to tackle these unique security challenges.

Bail of $100,000 each has been offered to Von Knorre and Hinz.

The maximum penalty for vandalism is a fine of $2,000 or three years' jail plus three to eight strokes of the cane.

If convicted of entering a protected place, they could be fined up to $1,000 and/or jailed for up to two years on each charge.

This article was first published on Dec 18, 2014.
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