Ticked off by mum, he beats her up

SINGAPORE - A man with a psychotic disorder hit his elderly mother repeatedly in the head and taped her mouth shut, after she quizzed him over a small issue.

The 150-minute ordeal in February left Madam Manikan Santanaletchmi, 62, with a swollen face and bruised legs.

An eye condition caused by complications from diabetes that she had was aggravated, sparking blurred vision and bleeding in her eyes. She had to go for surgery to restore her vision.

Yesterday, Yogaraj Arumugam, 33, who also stole $1,707 in cash and valuables from his mother during the flare-up, was given 26 months in prison.

He pleaded guilty on Tuesday to two charges arising from these, as well as a third for breaching a personal protection order in assaulting his mother.

The order had been issued in 2012 due to Yogaraj's previous instances of violence against her. He had been convicted of a similar breach a month before the incident.

On the morning of Feb 5, Madam Manikan was alone with Yogaraj in their Housing Board flat in Bukit Purmei Road. Her elder son, who also lives there, was out then.

The attack began shortly after she quizzed Yogaraj over his attitude towards a caller looking for her. He had answered the phone, told the caller his mother had died and hung up.

Unhappy with the question, he grabbed her hands, slapped her and punched her in the head. He then dragged her by the hair into his bedroom, sat on her back and continued punching her, pausing to pull both ends of her mouth sideways to stop her shouting for help. This caused it to bleed.

She urinated in her clothes during the beating and asked to use the toilet, but decided not to after he dragged her there but refused to let her close the door.

He later dragged her to her room and laid her on the bed, warning her to remain silent. She received help only when her elder son returned a few hours later.

The court spared Yogaraj caning because of his disorder, but said a significant jail term must be imposed for the "brutal and prolonged" assault. It urged him to continue seeking treatment.

Yogaraj, who was unrepresented, kept silent yesterday and said nothing in mitigation.

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