Father of Twins Charged with Murder Via Video Link; Case to Be Mentioned Again on 31 Jan

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News of the tragedy that happened last Friday (21 Jan) at Toh Yi, Upper Bukit Timah, of two eleven-year-old boys being found dead near the Greenridge Crescent playground must have promulgated over the weekend.

 Yet, the tragedy comes with a shocking twist:

The father of the twin boys, Xavier Yap Jung Houn, was arrested on Saturday (22 Jan) under the suspicion that he was responsible for the murders.

On Monday (24 Jan), Xavier Yap was charged with the murder of his son under Section 302(1) of the Penal Code 1871 in court, an offence that is punishable by death.

Details about the Police Report

In the previous article regarding the twin boys being found near the Greenridge Crescent Playground, it was made known that their bodies had been found inside the canal with a scattering of items that looked like cushion-like objects instead of the playground periphery.

The deceased in question, Ethan and Ashton Yap, were eleven-year-old twin boys with special needs due to their attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism.

The police had been alerted to the boys’ unnatural deaths because of a call that the father made at 6:25pm that Friday evening.

20 minutes later, the police and Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) descended upon the scene.

The twins were immediately pronounced dead on the spot by the paramedic.

According to the eyewitnesses and residents in nearby estates, the playground, canal, and forested area were usually very quiet.

Mr Yim, one of the nearby residents, stated that his helper heard some distress call, which sounded like someone asking for help from what (apparently) sounded like a woman. After hearing two shouts, everything went quiet again, and the helper merely dismissed the screams as children playing at the playground back then.

With what is known now, this testimony evidently established a possible timeframe of when the boys might have been murdered.

The conspicuously absent mother of this case had allegedly been at the crime scene at around 7pm that Friday, though she had broken down in her Mercedes upon receiving the news of her sons’ death.

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The Investigative Process

The police and SCDF continued to search for evidence well into midnight.

The entire playground and surrounding forested area had been cordoned off by the police starting from 7pm on Friday evening.

One resident, who prefers to remain unknown, stated that she saw the bodies being moved into a vehicle around midnight.


Later on, an orange car—which was an oddity that stood out in the private neighbourhood—was also towed away, though the reason for this action is still unknown.

The same night, alert messages were sent to taxi drivers to keep their eye out for a male aged between 30 to 40 years old of an unknown race, who was allegedly last seen at 3pm around Greenridge Crescent.

Image: Facebook (Singapore Taxi Driver)

The next morning, heavy police presence could be seen combing the entire area, including the Gurkha Contingent and the K-9 Units.

Image: Google Maps

Likewise, police in plain clothes were seen questioning the nearby residents and asking for footage from car cameras and close-circuit television cameras from homes.

In a statement, the police claimed that they followed up on all possible leads and conducted round-the-clock investigations, which eventually led to the arrest of Xavier Yap on Saturday night.


Court Proceedings

Thus, on Monday (24 Jan), Xavier Yap, appeared before the district court in a white polo shirt via a video call and had his charges read out to him.

The 48-year-old man had remained silent the whole time his case was being heard.

Yap was accused of murdering one of his sons, Ethan Yap E Chem, between 4:23pm and 6:25pm last Friday at the canal near the Greenridge Crescent Playground.

However, there were no other charges laid against him with regards to the death of his other son, Ashton Yap.

Afterwards, the district judge gave permission to the prosecution to remand the case for a week, so that Xavier Yap can be brought back to the crime scene for more in-depth scene investigation and the recovery of additional evidence.


According to The Straits Times, Yap’s defence lawyer Anil Singh Sandu, told the court that the family was grieving for the loss of the two children. He also urges the media to give the family space and privacy to deal with this tragedy.

This sentiment is echoed by Mr Fong Chun Cheong, the funeral director of the Singapore Yin Feng Shui Funeral Home, who is also a family friend and has been helping the boys’ mother with the funeral arrangement.

Mr Fong said: “They just want closure to be left alone…They just want to have peace.”

Thus far, Yap’s motivations for murdering his son and later reporting it remain undisclosed.

His case will resume in court on 31 January.


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Featured Image: Google Maps

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