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Swiss vandal faces jail and caning in Singapore

A Swiss man has been sentenced by a Singapore court to five months’ imprisonment and a caning for spraying graffiti on an underground train.

This content was published on June 25, 2010 - 13:16

On Friday, the 32 year old had pleaded guilty to the crimes he is accused of having committed on May 16.

A British citizen, who was accused alongside the Swiss man, has left the country. The two men are said to have broken into a train depot by cutting through a security fence and then spray painted a train carriage.

Singapore’s subway operator didn’t report the incident to the police for two days, because staff believed the graffiti was an advertisement.

“The sentence is five months prison and three strokes of the cane,” the judge said, delivering his verdict. Acts of vandalism can be punished by up to eight strokes of the cane in Singapore.

The Swiss man is said to have been working as an information technology consultant in Singapore since 2008.

In 1994, Singapore drew international attention to its severe punishments when it caned an American teenager for vandalism, despite then-President Bill Clinton’s pleas for leniency.

The city-state, which has one of the lowest violent crime rates, recently reiterated a ban on the sale of chewing gum and announced a crackdown on littering last month.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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