The death of the full-time national serviceman (NSF) at Tuas View fire station turned out like a result of a ragging incident and five Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) officers were charged in the court on Wednesday for their suspected involvement in this case.
The deceased, Corporal (CPL) Kok Yuen Chin went inside a pump well of Tuas View fire station, located at 130 Tuas South Ave 3 on May 13 but after some time his motionless body was found at the bottom of the water reservoir.
Earlier, SCDF stated that the incident happened due to a result of some prohibited activities. Now, reports stated that Chin died because he was a victim of ragging.
While on Wednesday the 33-year-old Staff Sergeant Muhammad Nur Fatwa Mahmood, was charged with one count of causing death by a rash act and faced another charge for helping the obstruction of justice, First Warrant Officer Mohamed Farid Mohd Saleh, 34, was also charged with abetting a rash act that took Chin's life.
Lieutenant Chong Chee Boon Kenneth and First Senior Warrant Officer Nazhan Mohamed Nazi, aged between 37 and 40, faced same charges, which is assisting a rash act causing grievous hurt by illegal omission. The 32-year-old, fifth accused, Staff Sergeant Adighazali Suhaimi was charged with intentionally obstructing the course of justice.
On the day of the incident, there were eight more officers who witnessed the scene. On Wednesday, in a statement, SCDF said that while six out of eight officers are regular officers, rest of them are full-time NSFs.
SCDF also added that if investigators found that these officers have violated the rules and regulations, then those regular officers will face public service disciplinary actions and that may include dismissal from service or demotion in rank. They also mentioned that is the investigations find that same violations were done by those NSFs, then they will be liable for detention and or demotion in rank under the Civil Defence Act.
However, as per the Penal Code section 304 A, whoever causes the death of any person by doing any rash or negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide, shall be punished — (a) in the case of a rash act, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 5 years, or with fine, or with both; or (b) in the case of a negligent act, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 2 years, or with fine, or with both.
Penal Code section 338 also states that whoever causes grievous hurt to any person by doing any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger human life or the personal safety of others, shall be punished — (a) in the case of a rash act, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to four years, or with fine which may extend to $10,000, or with both; or (b) in the case of a negligent act, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine which may extend to $5,000, or with both.
If the court found those officers guilty of obstructing, preventing, perverting or defeating the course of justice then they can face a term which may extend to seven years, or with fine, or with both.