Wanted man shot by police during arrest operation at Balestier Road

Staff Writer, Singapore
·Editorial Team
·3-min read
FILE PHOTO: Getty Images
FILE PHOTO: Getty Images

SINGAPORE — A man wanted by the police for drug offences was shot by an officer during an arrest operation against a cheating syndicate at a house in Balestier Road on Thursday (5 November), after he repeatedly assaulted an officer and then grabbed another officer’s revolver.

The 36-year-old suspect had a gunshot wound to his abdomen and was seen by a paramedic before he was sent conscious to hospital. He is in stable condition, the police said in a news release on Thursday.

The first police officer had injuries on his face and arm while the second officer had injuries on his hands and lips.

The police seized about $20,000 in suspected criminal proceeds, drugs and drug-taking utensils from the house.

Scam syndicate

Police said the suspect was among seven arrested by officers from Tanglin Police Division between Tuesday and Thursday, including three females, for allegedly carrying out a series of scams.

“Through a series of syndicated scams, the offenders allegedly made use of other persons’ particulars to apply for and purchase new handsets and phone lines from a telco.

“They would then make the initial payment using fraudulently obtained credit card details and after receiving the brand new handsets, sell them for cash,” said the police.

As a result of the alleged cheating, the telco incurred a loss of about $43,000 from the handset sales.

The seven victims whose particulars were misused were also charged for the mobile phone subscriptions.

Successful raids

On Tuesday, officers intercepted a delivery of six handsets purchased by the offenders and arrested a 32-year-old man along Lorong 23 Geylang.

The same day, officers mounted another raid at Bukit Timah Road and seized five handsets, 23 SIM cards, a laptop and a signature pad.

Then on Thursday, a group of officers launched another raid at a house along Balestier Road where four of the seven alleged offenders were. Three officers entered the unit at about 1am on Thursday.

The 36-year-old man was there, along with a 22-year-old man as well as their respective girlfriends, aged 33 and 23.

While the older man was wanted by the police for drug offences, he, his girlfriend and the younger man were all wanted for other cheating offences. The 33-year-old woman was also wanted for failure to attend court.

Assault on cop

While the police officers were inside the unit, the 36-year-old man suddenly lunged at the first officer and “attacked him repeatedly, causing the officer to fall on the floor bleeding from the face”, said the police. The second officer warned the man to desist, but to no avail.

The 22-year-old man then approached the first officer. Seeing this, the second officer assessed that he could join in the assault.

“Concerned with the safety of his partner, the second officer immediately drew his revolver and warned (the older suspect) to stop his assault,” said the police.

Still, he persisted in hitting the officer who was on the ground.

Violent struggle over gun

“Suddenly, (the older suspect) rushed towards the second officer and grabbed his revolver, and a violent struggle ensued,” said the police.

The younger suspect then assaulted the first officer while the older suspect tried to snatch the second officer’s revolver.

“During the brawl, and for his own safety and to prevent (the older suspect) from snatching his revolver, the second officer discharged one round from the revolver at (him),” said the police.

Despite a gunshot wound to the abdomen, the 36-year-old man persisted in struggling for the firearm.

Both he and the 22-year-old man were later subdued by backup officers who arrived at the unit. A paramedic attended to the older suspect at the scene.

Both suspects were arrested for cheating, drug consumption, and causing hurt to deter a public servant from discharging his duty.

Meanwhile, their girlfriends were arrested for cheating and drug consumption.

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