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Man arrested in SIngapore (Representational picture) Reuters

Singapore's Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) has arrested a 35-year-old man for his suspected involvement in harbouring offenders, by subletting his flat.

Reports stated that the accused Chinese national allegedly sublet a flat, located at Toa Payoh, to 15 occupants. He also provided a place to a 40-year-old Chinese man, who overstayed in the country. The police arrested him too for overstaying in Singapore, though his work permit has been canceled.

The ICA said on Friday that the officers raided the flat, which had three bedrooms, at around 6 am on Monday morning, April 2. The flat, located at Toa Payong Lorong 2, had been sublet to 15 occupants, including a Singaporean, 13 other valid pass holders and one who overstayed.

During the raid, the officers found two illegally partitioned bedrooms in the living room.

The ICA has been advising the house owners to do some background check on their prospective foreign tenants to ensure that they are living in Singapore legally.

Here are 3 steps, advised by the ICA to avoid such illegal occupants:

  • Check his or her original immigration or work pass.
  • Cross-check the particulars on his or her pass against the particulars on his or her original passport.
  • Verify the validity of the pass by checking with the issuing authority.

In Singapore, immigration violations are governed by Section 57 Immigration Act and as per Section 57(1)(d), anyone who harbors's any person whom he knows has committed an immigration offence or anyone who harbors's any person and recklessly disregards as to whether that person has committed an immigration offence, shall be punished with imprisonment for a period between 6 months and 2 years and shall also be liable for a fine of up to $6,000.

Under the Immigration Act (Cap 133) the punishment for overstaying or an illegal entry to the country is a jail term up to six months plus three strokes of the cane.