Lorry driver jailed 3 months in Bukit Batok road rage

Wan Ting Koh
Reporter
Singapore’s State Courts (Yahoo file photo)

A lorry driver swung a hammer at a motorcyclist who confronted him over a road incident along Bukit Batok Road, causing the motorcyclist to dislocate his left shoulder when he tried to avoid the attack.

Chinese national Chen Zhengliang, 39, was on Wednesday (26 April) found guilty and jailed three months for swinging a hammer at Mohamed Akbar Sha, 26, after a four-day trial in the State Courts.

He was convicted of voluntarily causing hurt with a dangerous weapon, in relation to an attempt to commit the offence. Chen was working as a driver for Chuan Transport during the time of the incident.

The court heard that on 31 January last year, Akbar was riding his motorcycle on the third lane of the three-lane road along Bukit Batok Road towards Choa Chu Kang Road. Chen was driving his company lorry along the middle lane next to Akbar’s motorcycle.

Chen then filtered into the lane Akbar was in without checking his blindspot, and continued to do so even after Akbar sounded his horn. Akbar managed to accelerate past the lorry.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Puvaneswari Sandirasekaran said, “(Akbar) then turned and gesticulated at (Chen) angrily as (Chen) has almost collided into him.” Chen, in response, pointed his middle finger at Akbar.

Both then pulled over at the side of the road where Akbar confronted Chen in his lorry. But Chen alighted from his lorry with a hammer in his hand and swung it in Akbar’s direction.

Akbar, in an attempt to dodge the attack, twisted his left arm and dislocated his left shoulder. He shouted for help and two witnesses went to his assistance.

The prosecution, which asked for a three-month sentence, said that Chen had shown no remorse.

In mitigation, Chen’s defence lawyer Chow Weng Weng said that Chen had been “behaving himself in accordance with the law” for the 11 years that he had been living in Singapore. He added that Chen had been “living like a pauper” as his employment was terminated when he was charged.

However, the DPP said that Chen had been terminated after the trial due to a workplace dispute.

In sentencing Chen, District Judge Shaiffudin Saruwan said that Chen’s response to the incident was “wholly disproportionate” and that it was “fortuitous” that no other injury was caused by the hammer.

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