Singapore's award-winning director faces six weeks of imprisonment for assaulting taxi driver

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Singapore's one of the famous directors, Gilbert Chan Khai Chuen was sentenced to six weeks of jail term after assaulting and causing hurt to a 64-year old taxi driver. District judge Carol Ling found him guilty on July 3 and he received his sentence on Tuesday, July 17.

On the day of the incident, which took place on April 20, 2017, the award-winning 42-year-old director was heavily drunk and boarded a cab of the victim, Ooi Him Chieng from Goodwood Park Hotel to go home.

As mentioned in the court documents when the victim dropped Chuen, the fare of that ride was $26.35. But, the convict did not pay the accurate amount and after that, the argument started. As told by the Deputy Public Prosecutor Dwayne Lum, Chieng was later beaten by the accused after asking for the exact money.

Lum also said during the hearing that the elderly cabby was cried out of pain as Chuen punched him as well kicked him. Saravanan Subramaniam, a security guard at a condominium watched the scene as he was present at the same location. Later, he informed the police about the incident.

The court came to know on Tuesday that before the trial the accused director paid $100 to Chieng for his medical expenses. Chuen also gave the injured man, who suffered a bruise on his left shoulder, another $320 as a restitution for his four-day loss of income.

But the DPP Lum told the court the accused must be sent to jail for at least six weeks as the society needs to learn a lesson for such violent and aggressive moves towards the taxi drivers, who provide the community with an essential and invaluable service.

Chuen had no representatives from his side but, he urged for only a fine. However, later he was offered a bail of $10,000 and told the court that he will be appealing against his sentence.

As per the Penal Code, usually whoever, except in the case provided for by section 334 (Voluntarily causing hurt on provocation), voluntarily causes hurt, faces an imprisonment for maximum 2 years, or a fine which may extend to $5,000, or both.