THE TEMASEK TIMES

News and views from an unique perspective

Outcry over Law Minister’s ‘clarification’ that a fine is the ‘norm’ in Woffles Wu’s case

Posted by temasektimes on June 18, 2012

A massive outcry has erupted among Singaporeans over Law Minister Shanmugam’s clarification that a fine is the ‘norm’ in the controversial Woffles Wu’s case which raised serious question on the impartiality of Singapore’s justice system.

A celebrity plastic surgeon who appeared regularly in the media and magazines like the Singapore Tatler, Woffles Wu was charged in court for asking an employee Kuah Yit Wah to take the rap for his speeding offences TWICE in 2005 and 2006.

Despite the severity of his crime, Woffles Wu was only given a ‘touch’ on his wrist when he was let off the hook with a mere $1,000 fine by the judge whose identity is kept in secret by the media for some strange reasons.

In contrast, a 51 year old sales executive Charlie Lim Chau Lee was jailed for six months for asking others to take the blame for his traffic offence in September 2010. (read more here)

The shocking verdict caused an outcry among Singaporeans including PAP MP Hri Kumar Nair, a lawyer by profession who blogged:

“I must admit I was surprised by the fine of $1,000 imposed on Woffles Woo for paying someone to take a speeding rap for him. Such offences are undoubtedly serious, as they seek to undermine the course of justice. Others who have committed similar offences have been jailed.”

However, Mr Shanmugam does not share his views and told reporters on the sideline of a community event today that a fine is apparently “within the norm of usual sentences” under that charge.

Mr Shanmugam further claimed that fines are more commonly meted out in such cases without providing any statistics to substantiate them.

He added that Mr Kuan was also not charged and that could have been because the AGC took into account the fact that Mr Kuan is now over 80 years of age.

Many Singaporeans do not accept Mr Shanmugam’s explanation and continue to demand for answers on Facebook:

“There’s nothing to defend..2 similar cases but 2 different sentencing? Simply not fair..need a review…seriously…” – Bobby Liu

“Its funny if you look at it this way , why a need for the Law Minister to come out and give a view which isn’t even what we call a point of view just for one Woffles Wu ? We don’t see him to come out speak on the laws on drink driving , hit and run or other court sentences .An obvious hint that Shanmugam makes up his owns laws or indirectly telling us the laws can close it’s eyes as long as you are rich ?” – Yeo Seng Leng

“A fine has already been imposed and only upon public outcry, they now say investigations are still ongoing. Is it the norm of law courts to pass sentence and then say, wait…investigations are still going on ??? How ridiculous !” – Robert Wong

“The law here is nicely crafted to protect the rich & powerful.. It’s an open secret which the rich & powerful know very well..” – Ng Teck Guan

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Related articles:

Law Minister defends Woffes Wu’s lenient sentence

PAP MP Hri Kumar surprised by $1000 fine imposed on Woffles Wu

Salesman jailed for asking others to take rap for traffic offence, plastic surgeon let off with only a fine

17 Responses to “Outcry over Law Minister’s ‘clarification’ that a fine is the ‘norm’ in Woffles Wu’s case”

  1. P Koh said

    When two offences are similar then it is technically wrong to have two different outcomes in dishing out penalties. If this is the case, where is the law and order when judges can make emotional sentencing avoiding the application of justice? Then the law is flawed and the judiciary system is in need of an overhaul.

  2. waffles who? said

    This waffles fellow is so very stupid. Speeding is just a fine plus some points. Why does he lie? It must be that he’s a dangerous driver with many offences on record. Just suspend him from driving. Is he that poor not to get a chauffer? He must be a damn bastard dangerous driver.

  3. my grandfather time said

    WP Mr Low please bring this up …

  4. whatdouthink said

    What about criminal intimidation?
    Wonder if Mr.Kuan was coerced in any way?(Woffles was his boss then)
    Think he will be the fall guy again?

  5. Bernard Deng said

    It is very inappropriate for the law minister to comment on this kind of issue. The public is not unaware of the law. Clearly,there is a distinct disparity to the extent of miscarriage of justice. Justice must be seen to be done. Has it?

  6. kaypoh said

    Aiyoh, pity the man lah, if he sit in the Changi free hotel for 6 months imagine how many million $$$ of productivity lost, income tax lost, and we need top surgeons to earn earn earn $$$ so that MPs can peg to the top earners mah….

    Besides the surgeons depend on their hands for livelihood, very light touch on wrist enough liao, dun handcuff later impair the function during surgery wor!

  7. Mike Zeng said

    It’s been like that for a long time…….one law for the rich & powerful, another for the rakyat or commoners. This animalfarm syndrome is not unique here but happens in many other undemocratic countries like the northern African ones Egypt, Tunisia, Libya etc….leading to the Arab Spring.
    I suppose it’s only human nature to protect their own and watch out for each other in their exclusive circle. Of course there’s a limit to this discriminating unofficial policy…..they try their best till they can’t anymore due to unexpected early exposure by the media esp online ones, etc.
    All Singaporeans are equal, but some are more equal than others.

  8. Angry Singaporean said

    May be there is some secrets like plastic surgery done on many “top class” that cannot allow him to jail or prevent him to expose or what?????

  9. dan2429E said

    …already a PAP MP has expressed being surprised at the verdict…..
    …it speaks that within the ranks of PAP there are members who are dissidents…..
    …maybe such people could split from the ruling party and join the WP……
    …this will add more credibility to the talent-depleted party…….

  10. spotlessleopard said

    I don’t know what to say (stomping my feet) and “What do you think”…..

  11. AnyHowAlsoCan said

    What happened to their driving licences after the first and second incidents? And now? Are they still driving around without suspension?

  12. Jaded said

    the PAP is out of touch with the people, time to vote them out 2016!

  13. Eat Shit said

    “The Law applies to All or non at All”…Mayor of Manila Afredo Lim

  14. Busybodyl said

    Is it worth paying so much for such brainless creature????

  15. SomethingVeryWrongSomewhere said

    Hey Honourable Law Minister,

    Suggest that you step down from your post immediately to prevent more cases of miscarriage of justice from occurring!

    Show to us that you have got dignity & integrity with your immediate resignation, please & thanks in advance!

  16. solaris8899 said

    I always think that sg laws are equal to everyone, local or foreigners, rich or poor, but it seems like come to penalty, there is a differentiate.

  17. J said

    People with influences can get off easily…. that’s how singapore law works… if you know a minister you will be OK….Don’t know anyone high up …. then fuck spider!!! BIG TIME!!

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