Singapore has seen its fair share of crime in recent years but a robbery carried out by Mahadi Muhamad Mukhtar, who is now 39 years old, was one of the more serious ones in the past year.
The former Aetos officer pleaded guilty to two charges under the Armed Offences Act—one for unlawful possession of a firearm and one for unlawfully carrying a firearm—and one charge of robbery.
All these charges lead to Mahadi being sentenced to 16 and a half years in prison with 18 strokes of the cane.
During the hearing, Deputy Public Prosecutor Timotheus Koh said that due to the severity of the crime, Mahadi should be jailed for 15 to 20 years and receive 18 strokes of the cane.
He further added that the sentence should send a message that these kind of crime and behaviour will not be tolerated in Singapore.
Copied Standard Chartered Bank Robber
During his statement in court, Mahadi admitted that his robbery approach which consist of using a note filled with his demands was based on the robbery of Standard Chartered Bank, which was committed by David James Roach in 2016.
The only difference is that Mahadi carried out the crime with an actual firearm with live rounds.
On 12 April 2021, Mahadi decided to rob OT Credit located at Jurong Gateway Road. He did so by carrying his loaded service revolver, that had five live rounds and a note that has his demands.
Upon reaching the shop, he passed the demand note to the loan officer working at OT Credit and eventually walked away with $24,800.
He then returns to the Aetos Headquarters, where he changed back into his uniform and carried out his duties at ST Engineering.
Mahadi was arrested five hours later. The note that he used for his demands was also recovered at a dustbin at the entrance of ST Engineering.
Heavily in Debt
When asked about the reason for his crime, Mahadi stated that he committed it because he owed six different unlicensed moneylenders a huge amount of money and he had no way of repaying them.
This links to the investigation where investigation officers found out that Mahadi transferred more than $11,000 to four different loansharks after the robbery.
Punishment May Have been More Severe
Although Mahadi has been sentenced to 16 and a half years of prison and 18 strokes of the cane, he could have gotten a harsher punishment.
According to the law, if a person is convicted of unlawful possession of firearms or ammunition, he or she can face up to 14 years in jail and at least six strokes of the cane.
For committing robbery, a person can face up to 10 years in jail and at least six strokes of the cane.
Back in 2016, Roach was sentenced to five years in jail and six strokes of the can for robbery. However, his caning sentence was remitted due to the agreement the Singapore Government made with the British Government in order to secure Roach’s extradition.
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