A 38-year-old man in Singapore has been charged for unlawfully attending a social gathering in Singapore breaching coronavirus temporary measures. Francis Soh Seng Chye left his home between 7 pm to 8 pm to meet Ms Lye Bao Ru in a Circuit Road flat on April 8.

A statement released by the Ministry of Health states that the gathering involved six people and lasted for an hour at Lye's house. There was no mention of Lye and other five of committing the offence. Soh said he intends to plead guilty and will be back in court on May 20.

Social gatherings among individuals not living under the same residence have been prohibited by the authority from April 7 to June 1 under the regulations 6 of COVID-19 Regulations 2020. Under section 34(7) of COVID-19 Act 2020, if any individual commits an offence the person is liable to fine up to $10,000 or up to six months of imprisonment, or both.

"The Ministry of Health will not hesitate to take enforcement action against those who fail to comply with the COVID-19 regulations," the statement reads.

Similar case

Singapore

In a recent case, Alan Tham Xiang Sheng and Palanivelu Ramasamy were also convicted for breaching stay-home notice in mid-April. Tham who runs an online business arrived Singapore from Myanmar on March 23 and was served with stay-home order. Instead of going home directly he picked up his girlfriend and went to the food court at Changi Airport.

Later, both of them went to Peninsula Plaza where he met a money changer. The couple then arrived at his home through private-hire car and hours later again left for Kampung Admiralty Hawker Centre in Woodlands Drive through the public bus. THE STRAITS TIMES reported, Kenneth Chin, Deputy Public Prosecutor urged to sentence Tham for at least 12 weeks of imprisonment to warn others from committing a similar offence.

Tham's lawyer stressed on stay-home order did not specify him to go home immediately after receiving it. The lawyer requested Tham to be given a maximum fine of up to $10,000 adding he was not infected with coronavirus and had not been gallivanting.