Dr Ho Thong Chew blames addicts for ‘pressurizing’ him to sell cough mixtures
Posted by temasektimes on June 23, 2012
Disgraced General Practitioner Dr Ho Thong Chew (pic left) who was convicted of illegally selling cough mixture laced with codeine has laid the blame squarely on his patients for ‘pressurizing’ him to sell them.
Ho sold more than 800 canisters of the cough syrup to three of his patients.
Ho Thong Chew, 41, is said to have sold Dhasedyl by the canister, each holding 3.8 litres.
He is alleged, for example, to have sold two to five canisters at $600 each to one of the three men every week. About $80,000 was seized from his home.
The prosecution had asked for between two and three months’ jail for each of the proceeded charges, arguing that Ho had abused his position as a medical practitioner, blatantly disregarding public safety and the law, to reap a profit of more than S$266,800.
In mitigation, Ho’s defence lawyer claimed that he was ‘pressured’ into committing the offences by cough mixture addicts, who drove his patients away causing his clinic Focus Medical Group in Ang Mo Kio to struggle to make ends meet.
He added that Ho has been suffering from depression for a ‘long time’ and needs money to care for a disabled daughter.
During the court session, Ho, whose clinic has now been shut down by the Health Ministry, was seen crying in the dock.