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Everything posted by The_King

  1. another safe way is go those legal brothel they need to go for std test monthly or every 3 month (cant remember, i did ask them before)
  2. nowaday i just seek for HJ only or bj with condom now too old for all these shit
  3. SINGAPORE: There has been a significant rise in COVID-19 infections in Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said on Saturday (Dec 2), urging people to keep up to date with their vaccinations. The number of estimated COVID-19 infections doubled to 22,094 in the week of Nov 19 to 25, compared with 10,726 in the previous week. Advertisement “The average daily COVID-19 hospitalisations and ICU cases have remained stable,” the ministry added. MOH said the rise in infections could be due to factors such as the year-end travelling season and waning population immunity. EG.5 and its sub-lineage HK.3 remain the predominant subvariants in Singapore, accounting for more than 70 per cent of the cases sequenced. “Currently, there is no indication that the predominant subvariants are more transmissible or cause more severe disease compared to other circulating variants,” MOH said. GLOBAL RESPIRATORY ILLNESSES Noting the rise in respiratory illnesses in northern-hemisphere countries in the winter months, the ministry said the overall incidence of respiratory illnesses in Singapore has remained stable over the past month. “There is no indication of increases in severe respiratory illness, including in children,” it added. China, which has seen a surge in "influenza-like illness" since mid-October, said the spike was due to the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions and the circulation of known pathogens, namely influenza and common bacterial infections that affect children, including mycoplasma pneumonia. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Chinese authorities said they have not detected any “unusual or novel pathogens” in the north of the country. Singapore’s Health Ministry noted that to date, the WHO has stated that the increasing trend of respiratory illnesses is not unexpected due to the onset of the winter season. COVID-19 infections contribute towards the overall number of respiratory illness cases in Singapore. MOH advised people to keep up to date with their COVID-19 vaccination, recommending an additional dose at around one year after their last vaccine dose for those aged 60 and above, medically vulnerable people as well as residents of aged care facilities. “Beyond this group, all individuals aged six months and above are also encouraged to receive the additional dose, particularly for healthcare workers and household members/caregivers of medically vulnerable individuals,” the ministry added. “MOH continues to monitor the global and local situations closely. With the start of the peak season for travelling overseas, MOH would like to remind all travellers to be vigilant and to adopt relevant travel precautions.” People can get vaccinated against COVID-19 at the Joint Testing and Vaccination Centres. They may also receive their jabs at these clinics. Source: CNA/gs
  4. The owner of a digital lock business housed in a Yishun industrial building claims government officials told him he would have to pay more than S$260,000 to continue using his unit as a showroom. The owner, Ronn Teo, 33, said he could not pay the "land betterment charge" and had to close the businesses he owned at the industrial hub on Nov. 9, 2023, in compliance with the authorities' demands. Teo said in an interview with Mothership that he felt the charges were too expensive for smaller businesses. He claimed many other showrooms in the area are operating as normal and claimed they don't have to pay a "Land Betterment Fee". Issued enforcement notice for using factory space as showroom Earlier in May, Teo opened My Digital Lock Pte Ltd (Yishun) at level 1 of A' Posh Biz Hub at 1 Yishun Industrial Street 1. Image from My Digital Lock (Yishun) on Google. He opened an interior design showroom in an adjoining unit a few months later. He said that in September, Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) officials checked his units and found that he was operating them as showrooms without the requisite planning permissions. URA guidelines state that showrooms in industrial estates are confined to the first floor or basement and subject to "land betterment charges", as the land is primarily designated for use by factories. Teo was issued an enforcement notice and required to cease operating the units as a showroom by Nov. 9 or potentially face fines and a jail term. He complied by shuttering his businesses. Previously, Teo had received a similar enforcement notice after he was found to be running a showroom and office on the second floor of the same building. That was what prompted his move to the first-floor units in November 2022. Felt the charges were too much Teo told Mothership that he felt he had no choice but to close shop as the alternative — paying over S$260,000 of land betterment charges for each of his units — was too much. The price was quoted in an invoice from the Singapore Land Authority (SLA), which he received in May after buying the space. The charges would have to be paid every three years. Screenshot from Teo. Teo said that he had already spent upwards of S$500,000 on the business, so the land betterment charges represented a sizeable added cost. "Who has that kind of money?" he questioned. He expressed that other small businesses like his would probably struggle to afford those charges. Aftermath Following the closure of his businesses, Teo said he is exploring alternative options with his legal team, such as replanning the space to reduce land betterment fees or paying it in instalments. He does not know when he might be able to resume operations. Since then, at least five of Teo's 85 employees have resigned as he could not offer them positions elsewhere. Teo felt that his business had been unfairly singled out. He claimed at least 40 other showrooms were operating in the Yishun industrial estate alone, including many in the same building. Owner set up showroom without approval: URA and SLA In response to media queries, URA and SLA confirmed in a joint statement that the primary use of the A' Posh Biz Hub industrial building is for factories and warehouses. The authorities said that Teo himself had submitted a land use application in March for the space to be converted into a showroom. After evaluation, URA informed Teo that the application would be approved, provided he paid the land betterment fee in advance. The authorities clarified that using the factory space as a showroom for commercial purposes would increase the value of the land. As Teo was unwilling to pay the fees, URA notified him in April that his application would not be approved, so he was not permitted to set up a showroom. In September, when law enforcement officers inspected the premises, they found that the space was being used as a showroom, so they issued a notice for the units' closure. According to a written parliamentary reply on Nov. 22, 2023, the URA investigates potential infringements involving commercial properties based on public tip-offs and regular checks. As of October, 56 violations were detected and enforced against in 2023.
  5. One woman in Singapore was eagerly looking forward to her McSpicy meal after a hard day of work. The woman, who prefers to remain anonymous, told Mothership that she had made the order via McDelivery from McDonald's Woodlands Mart on Nov. 28. The spread included a McSpicy meal, a double Mcspicy meal and a nugget meal for her and her family. Add cheese However, the sight that greeted her when she finally unboxed her meal left much to be desired. The woman had added extra cheese to both burgers — McSpicy burgers typically do not include cheese. Photo from Mothership reader The cheese was certainly added, but not inside the burger. What she found instead was cheese supposedly plastered to the top of the buns for not one, but both burgers. Photo from Mothership reader Some of the cheese was stuck to the lid of the box, making for a rather messy sight. Photo from Mothership reader "It was unappealing and it makes me feel like I’m a joke," the woman lamented. "I mean what’s the point of having cheese on top of it???" The woman acknowledged that the staff might have been busy, but noted that this was still a meal customers pay for. After the incident, she also declared that the standard of McDonald's food has been dropping. She claimed that she reached out to McDonald's to inform them of the incident, but did not receive any reply. Mothership has reached out to McDonald's for more information.
  6. SINGAPORE: Singapore saw 10 per cent more newly diagnosed human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) cases among residents in the first 10 months of 2023 than it did during the same period last year, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said on Friday (Dec 1). A total of 188 cases were reported between January and October, MOH said in an update on the HIV and AIDS situation in the country. Advertisement This comes after three consecutive years of declining cases, with last year’s number – 202 cases – being the lowest since 1998. There were 250 new HIV infections in 2021, 261 in 2020, and 323 in 2019. Of the 104 cases reported between January and June, 97 per cent were male and 48 per cent had a late-stage HIV infection at the time of their diagnosis, which is 11 per cent lower than the figure for the same period last year. Twenty-seven per cent were aged between 30 and 39, while 21 per cent were 40 to 49 years old and 23 per cent were 50 to 59 years old. Sexual intercourse remained the main mode of HIV transmission, accounting for 96 per cent of the cases reported in the first half of the year, MOH said. Heterosexuals accounted for 28 per cent of the 104 cases, while 68 per cent of the cases occurred in men who have sex with men. This includes men who reported sexual activity with men and women, who accounted for 4 per cent of cases. One case occurred as a result of intravenous drug use. More than half of the newly reported cases – 58 per cent – were detected during the course of medical care, of which a greater proportion were at a late stage of HIV infection compared with other modes of detection, MOH said. Another 13 per cent were detected through routine programmatic HIV screening, while 18 per cent were detected through self-initiated HIV screening. The rest were detected through other forms of screening. A higher proportion of men who have sex with men had their infections detected via self-initiated HIV screening compared to heterosexuals, at 25 per cent and 3 per cent respectively. In a public advisory, MOH said that every adult should get tested for HIV at least once in their lifetime regardless of risk factors. “Individuals who engage in high-risk sexual behaviours should go for regular HIV testing every three to six months,” the ministry added. MOH also said that knowing one’s HIV status enables one to receive treatment early and prevent others from getting infected. “With early and effective treatment, persons living with HIV can lead lives no different from others,” the ministry said. “Although there is no cure for HIV, persons living with HIV can be treated with antiretroviral therapy which is effective at controlling the infection. “This also provides an opportunity to protect their partners from infection as people living with HIV who are on regular treatment and have an undetectable viral load have practically no risk of transmitting the virus to their sexual partners.” It noted that 94 per cent of Singapore’s residents who are living with HIV and undergoing treatment have achieved an undetectable viral load. MOH added that the most effective way to avoid contracting HIV is to remain faithful to one’s spouse or partner and to avoid casual sex or sex with sex workers. The ministry also strongly advised those who have multiple sexual partners or engage in casual or commercial sex to use condoms consistently and correctly to reduce their risk of contracting HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. “In addition, preventive measures like HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis are highly effective when used as part of a comprehensive HIV prevention strategy,” MOH said. Source: CNA/ga(kg) https://www.channelnewsasia.com/singapore/singapore-newly-diagnosed-hiv-cases-residents-january-october-2023-3958911
  7. From Dec 1, all foreigners travelling to Malaysia will have to fill up the Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC). The Immigration Department of Malaysia said on Facebook on Dec 1 that the online card will have to be completed before arrival. According to the Immigration Department’s MDAC website, exceptions are given only to Malaysia’s permanent residents, Malaysia Automated Clearance System pass holders and those transiting or transferring through Singapore without seeking immigration clearance. The website said the MDAC card should be completed within three days before arrival in Malaysia. Travellers will have to fill up their personal particulars, including name, nationality, passport details and arrival as well as departure dates at this website. In January 2023, Singaporeans were allowed to use e-gate facilities at the two land entry points in Johor Bahru, with the pre-filling of the MDAC as a condition. This was expanded a month later to allow Singaporeans and foreigners from nine “low-risk” countries to use the autogate facilities to clear immigration at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) Terminal 1 and the second terminal, KLIA Terminal 2.
  8. SINGAPORE: In 2018, Ms Dawn Cher decided to store her first child's cord blood with private cord blood bank Cordlife after considering, among other factors, the company's track record and its accreditation. The founder of personal finance blog SG Budget Babe did the same when her second child was born three years later. The mother of two was "crushed" to find out on Thursday (Nov 30) that her children’s cord blood could have been compromised by Cordlife’s missteps. On Thursday, the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced that it was investigating Cordlife - Singapore's longest-running cord blood bank - after seven of its tanks storing cord blood units were exposed to temperatures above acceptable limits. Cord blood, which contains stem cells, may be used in stem cell transplants to treat blood diseases and some cancers such as leukemia and lymphoma, should the baby develop such illnesses in the future. Around 2,200 cord blood units belonging to approximately 2,150 clients have been damaged with another 17,000 clients possibly affected. Cordlife, which is listed on the Singapore Exchange, has since reached out to some parents via email about the blunder. But customers have criticised the vagueness of the email, and complained about the seeming lack of transparency and accountability from the company. MOH conducted its first unannounced audit on the company on Aug 15 this year following a complaint from a member of the public in July. The ministry conducted another audit from Nov 16 to Nov 21. The audits showed that Cordlife's cryopreserved cord blood units had been exposed to temperatures above acceptable limits in seven of its 22 storage tanks at different periods, dating back to November 2020. CLIENTS KEPT IN THE DARK Many have taken to the company’s Facebook page to air their unhappiness, asking why Cordlife had not contacted clients before the news broke. One of them, a father of two, told CNA he stored his two children’s cord blood with the bank in 2006 and 2012 after learning that it had stem cells that could help with medical treatment in the future if needed. The 45-year-old business owner declined to be named in case it affected his dealings with Cordlife. Cordlife has since requested for the man’s information for follow-up, but has yet to confirm if his children’s cord blood were affected. He has not received any email from Cordlife yet. “My confidence in the company is definitely shaken. But I am concerned with the costs and potential risks involved in transferring. I am still waiting for their reply if our cord blood is affected and will decide after. I am disappointed that Cordlife had concealed the lapses for such a long period of time.” CNA has seen two versions of emails sent by Cordlife to clients. In one, the company states: “We wish to inform you that we detected an irregular temperature reading in seven of our cryogenic storage tanks in Singapore.” The company adds that it is still in the process of conducting a thorough investigation into what happened and is testing the donated cord blood samples stored across all tanks to determine the viability of the stem cells, and sought for clients’ patience. The other version, which is more specific, states: "We have detected an irregular temperature reading in the cryogenic storage tank in which your child's cord blood unit is stored." The email goes on to state that assessments by MOH have concluded that cord blood units within this tank are unlikely to be suitable for stem cell transplant at this point. Both emails state that if cord blood is subsequently found to be unviable for cord blood transplants or for therapeutic purposes, the company will make “every effort” to find a suitable replacement cord blood for the clients’ child. In its reply to CNA’s queries, Cordlife specified that this would involve working with public cord blood banks worldwide to source for a suitable match. For homemaker Lim Sze Tein - who is among those who have received the email - the news reports and correspondence from Cordlife had left her sleepless last night, she told CNA. “I just want to say it is not fair. I don't know how or what to feel,” said the 46-year-old, whose elder daughter’s cord blood has been stored with Cordlife since 2009. “They knew what happened since 2020 and they kept quiet about it. “It is unthinkable that something like this can happen and they seem so nonchalant about it. All that corporate speech is disgusting. There is zero empathy.” According to a filing on the Singapore Exchange, Cordlife Group Limited’s executive director and group chief executive officer Tan Poh Lan resigned from her positions on Oct 27. “Ms Tan has informed that she is retiring to pursue her personal interests,” Cordlife Group Limited’s board of directors announced, adding that Ms Tan's last day of service with the company would be on Mar 31, 2024. Ms Tan was named group chief operating officer on Apr 12, 2016 and was appointed as executive director and group chief executive officer on Feb 28, 2019. Asked about the resignation, a Cordlife spokesperson told CNA that Ms Tan’s decision was not related to the latest news. “Our group CEO is retiring to pursue her own interests,” a spokesperson reiterated. Cordlife marketing material on a paper cup at a gynaecologist clinic. (Photos: CNA reader) UNCLEAR IF AFFECTED Some clients also pointed out that the version of the email they received did not specifically state whether they had been affected. One of the recipients, Ms Cher, told CNA that the email she received only referred to the cord blood of her younger child and not the elder. Before her first child was born in 2018, Ms Cher and her husband had spent three to four months speaking to all the cord blood banks here, researching online and attending baby fairs before deciding on Cordlife. “It was a decision we mulled over for a long time before deciding on which company to store with, so we were crushed to hear the news,” the 33-year-old account director told CNA. She took to her blog in 2018 to detail why she had settled on Cordlife, including that it had the longest track record with the most number of successful transplants, as well as its accreditation with MOH and Association for the Advancement of Blood and Biotherapies. “It's good that they sent out the email, although I wish we received it before the news broke. In our case, we saw the news first, and then the email came in hours later,” Ms Cher said. “At this stage, there's still a lot of questions unanswered. We would like to see Cordlife investigate properly and give a full account of what happened, how the lapse occurred, why, rectification measures, and work with all affected clients on a viable solution for everyone.” Responding to queries from CNA, the spokesperson for Cordlife Singapore said the company is currently contacting all clients, including the 1,841 who have cord blood units stored in the affected tank where testing is complete. Cordlife clarified that the 1,841 excludes clients who have terminated their accounts with the company. The spokesperson also reiterated that the tank contains 2.66 per cent of all cord blood units stored by Cordlife Singapore as per current records. “This is an evolving situation, and our team is working hard to communicate with all of our affected and unaffected clients directly. “We seek our clients' understanding as we continue our outreach and ongoing testing.” The company added that it will be reaching out to clients who have either not registered an email address or have an outdated email via post. “For the other six tanks where irregular temperature readings were detected, investigations with the Ministry of Health are presently ongoing. We will provide those clients with updates as soon as possible,” said Cordlife’s spokesperson. For clients who are considering transferring their cord blood from Cordlife to another facility, the spokesperson said: “Moving cord blood units from one location to another is not recommended because this could potentially affect the stem cells.” If clients continue to store with Cordlife, the company said it will be able to “continue to honour the commitments” in the service agreement signed with clients. “However, if they insist on transferring, we will assist them in completing the transfer,” added the spokesperson. PARENTS PAID HIGH PRICES FOR STORAGE Other parents pointed to the high cost of storing their children’s cord blood and demanded explanations. Mr Chia Hong Loon, a father of two, had placed his firstborn’s cord blood, cord lining, and cord tissue with Cordlife in August 2020. For these services, he estimated having paid close to S$10,000 (US$7,474) to Cordlife thus far. Sharing the price plan he subscribed to, the 31-year-old financial consultant pointed out that his package for cord blood and cord tissue banking was a 21-year plan with an upfront payment of S$6,800. “I will need an explanation and see what they are going to do about it. (I am) definitely upset because it’s something that can be used if (there is) an emergency which we won’t want to see happen. “But now it might become something useless, (in addition) we just paid the renewal fee,” said Mr Chia, who added that he had not stored the cord blood of his second child. Likewise, Ms Aiza Bumacod, a mother of three, also forked about S$10,000 to store her second child’s cord blood and cord lining with Cordlife in 2019. “I feel deeply saddened and disappointed, thinking that I had invested a large sum of money and placed my trust in one of the best cord blood banks in Singapore,” said the 36-year-old nurse, adding that she chose the company for its high standards and integrity in promoting the safety and security of cord blood storage. “If they believe that compensating us will resolve this issue and address their irresponsibilities, I hope they understand that the damage caused to thousands of parents here in Singapore has brought us immense sorrow, and no amount of money can replace it.” One parent has decided to seek legal recourse and is calling on other parents for collective action. User Kikyo Chan stated in a Facebook post that she is seeking legal advice to "better understand her rights", particularly in the areas of consumer protection and contractual obligations. Asked if it intends to refund or compensate clients, Cordlife repeated its previous reply that it will waive off future storage fees for clients until their child turned 21 while continuing to store the cord blood. This is in view of developments in the field of cell and gene therapy. In its email to affected parents, Cordlife stated that those who have paid all the fees upfront will be refunded the amount they already paid for the storage of the cord blood from this year until their child reaches 21. The company will contact these parents over this issue at a later date. Cordlife's share price closed at 31 cents on Friday, down by about 32 per cent after closing at 45.5 cents the previous day. Source: CNA/wt/ng(sn)
  9. https://store.epicgames.com/en-US/p/jitsu-squad-af3f2f https://store.epicgames.com/en-US/p/mighty-fight-federation
  10. Why pizza got egg de, Then who the lucky one to get egg? Also can I have the left side, cause more meat
  11. Singapore has yet again been ranked as the most expensive city to live in, sharing the top spot with Zurich this year, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit. This is the ninth time in 11 years that Singapore topped the list, while Zurich jumped from its sixth place ranking last year. New York, which shared the top spot with the Southeast Asian nation last year, dropped to third place, sharing the spot with Geneva, the EIU reported in its twice-yearly Worldwide Cost of Living survey. The survey was conducted from Aug. 14 to Sept. 11 this year, comparing over 400 individual prices across more than 200 products and services in 173 cities. The research firm said Singapore clinched its top spot due to the high cost of groceries, alcohol, clothing, and owning a private vehicle. A strong currency and high prices for household items and recreational activities drove Zurich’s climb to No.1. Similar to Hong Kong which ranked fifth, Singapore is a small city-state that has a successful financial center, Syetarn Hansakul, senior analyst at the EIU said. “So naturally when you have limited space with many high paying professionals, there is a certain degree of demand pull inflation that compete for housing and other resources,” Hansakul told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Thursday. EIU highlighted that many cities continue to succumb to steeper prices as a result of high inflation, with prices rising by 7.4% year-on-year in local currency terms for more than 200 frequently used goods and services. While this is 0.7 percentage points lower than last year’s rate, it still remains higher than the trend from 2017 to 2021. Inflation in Asia is relatively lower than the rest of the world, which explains why only two Asian cities placed in top 10, Hansakul highlighted. “The world average increase in cost of living in 2023 is 7.4%. But in Asia, that increase on average is only 3%,” Hansakul said, adding that many governments in Asia have been able to keep prices in control compared to those in the U.S. and Europe. EIU said it expects inflation to continue to decelerate next year, but warned that any further escalation in the Israel-Hamas war could drive up energy prices and that stronger-than-expected El Niño conditions could push food prices even higher. Weak yuan and yen Among the biggest decliners in the EIU list were Chinese and Japanese cities that were dragged down by the weakening Chinese yuan and Japanese yen. Chinese cities Nanjing, Wuxi, Dalian and Beijing all dropped more than 25 spots, while Tokyo and Osaka in Japan plummeted 23 and 27 spots, respectively. The top 10 The top 10 most expensive cities in EIU’s list include two Asian cities, four European cities and three U.S. cities. Tel Aviv, Israel also ranked among the top 10, but EIU noted that the survey was conducted before the Israel-Hamas war broke out. Singapore — tie Zurich — tie Geneva — tie New York — tie Hong Kong Los Angeles Paris Copenhagen, Denmark — tie Tel Aviv — tie San Francisco
  12. SINGAPORE – Shares of Cordlife Group plunged more than 40 per cent on Dec 1 after the Ministry of Health (MOH) found that the company had damaged cord blood units belonging to at least 2,150 customers, making these unsuitable for stem cell transplant purposes. The stock was down 40.7 per cent to 27 cents at midday, after closing at 45.5 cents the previous day. It opened trading on Dec 1 at an all-time low of 16 cents. It then recovered some ground to trade at 26 cents. The last time the counter closed at this price was on March 30. It eventually closed at 31 cents on Dec 1, nearly 32 per cent down from the previous day’s close. Over 1.2 million shares changed hands, a marked increase in activity for the stock. Only 21,000 shares were traded on Nov 30. MOH said on Nov 30 that the cord blood bank was found to have exposed cryopreserved cord blood units at suboptimal temperatures, damaging the units. It has been ordered to stop collecting, testing, processing and/or storing any new cord blood and human tissues for up to six months. It is also not allowed to provide any new types of tests to patients. Investigations are still ongoing and MOH said it will consider further enforcement action. Cordlife Group is the first cord blood bank in Singapore. It owns seven facilities across the region and says it serves more than 600,000 parents in Asia. In a media statement, the firm said this was the only time that such incidents had happened in the company’s 22 years of storing cord blood here and regionally. The company will continue storing the damaged cord blood units for its clients until their child turns 21, in case these are still valuable with new developments in cell and gene therapy. Cordlife Group has 14 days to make any representation to MOH.
  13. SINGAPORE - Two more foreign students involved in a conspiracy to shoplift over $1,700 worth of Uniqlo apparel were jailed on Dec 1. Indian nationals Brahmbhatt Komal Chetankumar and Christian Arpita Arvindbhai, both 27, at first claimed in a previous court mention that they had no intention to steal. But the two women eventually pleaded guilty to shoplifting offences and were sentenced to 40 and 45 days’ jail respectively. District Judge Eugene Teo called their acts “disgraceful” and told them not to commit such offences again. Komal and Arpita were on student passes in Singapore and lived together in the same flat with four other foreigners. Along with other individuals, the group conspired to steal Uniqlo apparel together. Deputy Public Prosecutor Maximilian Chew told the court previously that one of the shoplifting incidents happened on Oct 12 at the Uniqlo outlet in Orchard Central. Three other Indian nationals, identified in court documents as Bhavik, 24, Vishal, 23, and Darshan, 22, were also in on the conspiracy. Bhavik and Vishal planned to steal from the outlet and roped the rest into the plan. The group went to the store at around 6pm that day. After picking out the apparel, they removed price tags containing radio-frequency identification (RFID), which could set off the store’s security alarm. They then bought tote bags at the self-checkout area, stuffed the apparel into the bags, and pretended they had paid for all of their items. The group left at around 7.30pm. They stole 64 pieces of apparel worth $1,788 in total. The authorities were alerted to the conspiracy when a second group – including some members of the first group – attempted to steal $2,271 worth of clothes from the same outlet days later. The second group failed in their attempt after a store security officer had noticed their suspicious behaviour. The police arrested members of the group after trawling through CCTV camera footage. By then, Bhavik, Vishal and Darshan had left Singapore. Komal and Arpita, who have been remanded since their arrest, attended the court hearing on Dec 1 via video link. They were represented by Ms Lim Lei Theng of Allen & Gledhill under the Enhanced Guidance for Plea Scheme. Ms Lim said the two women were looking forward to returning home and asked if Judge Teo could write a note to the prison authorities permitting them to call their mothers. Four others in the group – Shihora Ridham Mukeshbhai, 20, Hun Smit Ashokbhai, 21, Kuvadiya Milan Ghansyambhai, 26, and Chauhan Ruchi Sanjaykumar, 25 – were sentenced to between 40 and 65 days’ jail on Nov 22.
  14. SINGAPORE - Fans trying to buy tickets online on Dec 1 for J-pop duo Yoasobi’s debut concert in Singapore found themselves logged into other fans’ Ticketmaster online accounts when they tried to pay for their tickets. They were directed to other buyers’ purchase carts on the check-out page, with the full names, phone numbers and e-mail addresses of strangers fully visible. Some could even see other event and concert tickets that the account owners had bought previously. The J-pop concert is scheduled to be held on Jan 11, 2024 at Resorts World Sentosa. It was sold out within minutes after ticket sales started online at 10am on Dec 1. It is the duo’s first concert in Singapore. Ticketmaster is the official ticketing agent for the concert. An irate fan told The Straits Times that he was shocked when he wanted to pay for his tickets. “I was stunned to see that my cart didn’t have the tickets I selected. “It was only then that I realised the cart wasn’t mine, and the name, phone number and e-mail address were someone else’s,” said the fan, who asked to be identified by only his surname Leong. “Some people might have accidentally paid for other people’s tickets as no one would expect their cart to contain someone else’s items,” added the 28-year-old, a teaching assistant at a local university. More than 20 fans took to social media platform Reddit to air their frustrations about an hour after the sale started. Reddit user tracyperry94 wrote: “When I proceeded to check out, I realised I was paying for someone else. The information of the payee was leaked (such as e-mail address, contact details). “As I refreshed and moved back into the ‘My Tickets’ page, I found myself in another person’s ticket page.” The Reddit user added: “I had access to (other fans’) ticket information and I could even print their Taylor Swift Eras tour tickets. It’s ridiculous that there is even such a glitch. “In the end, I couldn’t even reach my own checkout the entire time, and my tickets were deleted by others, and (the) concert was sold out by then.” Many users urged those affected to report to the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) Singapore. A fan who wanted to be known only as Mr Cai told ST that he had made a report to PDPC as he was logged into another person’s account during the sale. The 33-year-old said he lost his seat tickets due to the glitch. Another fan, a 40-year-old who asked to be known as Mr Chew, found out that his personal details were leaked only hours after the sale when another fan who saw his details contacted him over the phone. He was worried that those who were able to access other fans’ accounts may print out and use concert tickets that do not belong to them. “(Ticketmaster) should be taken to task. “There should be a way to verify the ownership of the tickets so that those who print out tickets that aren’t theirs won’t be able to enter the concert,” he told ST, adding that he was not logged into anyone else’s account. He said: “Although I’m disappointed in Ticketmaster, (it is) one of the few authorised ticket sellers for such events.” When contacted, Ticketmaster said no sensitive information was shared. “Data privacy is at the core of everything we do. A temporary issue on our website has been quickly identified and fixed. No sensitive information was shared,” said a Ticketmaster spokesperson in an e-mail. Ticketmaster did not answer ST’s questions on the number of people affected by the incident and what caused the glitch. A PDPC spokesperson told ST: “PDPC is aware of the incident and is currently investigating.” Yoasobi is made up of vocalist Ikura, 23, and composer Ayase, 29. They are best known for producing the hit song Idol, which serves as the theme song to the anime Oshi No Ko. Aside from Singapore, Yoasobi will also be playing sold-out shows in Seoul and Taipei before moving on to other South-east Asian cities like Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur.
  15. SINGAPORE: An 18-year-old boy was on Friday (Dec 1) sentenced to 16 years in jail after pleading guilty to killing a fellow River Valley High School student with an axe on campus in 2021. The youth cannot be named as he committed the offence when he was a minor under the age of 18. During the hearing, the court lifted the gag order on the identity of the victim at the request of his parents, naming him as Ethan Hun Zhe Kai. On Jul 19, 2021, the 13-year-old boy was found lying motionless with multiple wounds in a toilet at River Valley High School located in Boon Lay. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The offender, then a 16-year-old Secondary 4 student, admitted to slashing the victim's head, neck and body with an axe between 11.16am and 11.44am that day. The students did not know each other. The offender picked the victim "entirely at random" in order to carry out a plan which would result in his own death as the police intervened in a life-threatening situation. The offender suffered from major depressive disorder at the time and had also watched online videos that desensitised him to the taking of a life, the court heard. The jail sentence handed down by Justice Hoo Sheau Peng is backdated to the day of his arrest. She said that while the offender suffered from depression for about six months leading up to the attack, he retained control over his actions and knew that what he intended to do was legally and morally wrong. The judge also noted that the offender's parents wrote Ethan's family a letter of apology shortly after their son was killed. Ethan’s parents replied with "a display of remarkable strength and fortitude, that they have forgiven the accused", said Justice Hoo. The prosecution, which described the case as "truly unprecedented", had sought 12 to 16 years' jail for the offender. The defence had asked for five years' imprisonment. Defence lawyer Mr Sunil Sudheesan said he would file an appeal against the sentence, describing the 16-year jail term as "crushing" for the young offender. The offender appeared in court wearing a white T-shirt with his head shaven. He listened quietly to court proceedings, only addressing the court to confirm his plea of guilt and admit to the facts. His father, mother, brother and other family members were present, and spoke to him after he was sentenced, holding his hands through a gap in the divider. Flowers are seen outside River Valley High School on Jul 20, 2021. (Photo: Tan Si Hui) The public gallery was full, with more than 40 people queueing to enter the courtroom before proceedings started. Ethan’s parents were not in court, but their lawyer Mervyn Cheong was present to observe court proceedings. In a statement issued through Mr Cheong, the victim's parents said: "We are heartbroken. We believe many who (know) Ethan will be too. "Yet, we want to encourage everyone to remember Ethan fondly instead. Remember him for his goodness, his kind heart, and his peace-loving nature. Remember that he would want us to be happy." PLAN TO END HIS LIFE The offender originally faced the capital charge of murder. His charge was reduced in February after the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) assessed that he was suffering from clinical depression at the time of the incident. According to past court hearings, he was previously seen as a patient at IMH, including after a suicide attempt when he was 14. Details of the offender’s struggle with depression and suicidal thoughts emerged in court on Friday. For instance, he watched videos from time to time showing people dying. In January 2021, he started exploring ways of ending his life. He formed a plan to attack people at his school as he believed this would result in his own death as the police intervened. He wrote two poems and conducted multiple internet searches related to the plan. In March and April 2021, he bought a knife and two axes, including the one eventually used in the killing. THE FATAL ATTACK The offender initially decided to carry out his plan in school on Jul 14, 2021, but did not go through with it. On Jul 19, 2021, the offender brought the weapons to school concealed in a badminton bag and hid them in a male toilet. He used caution tape to cordon off the corridor leading to the toilet, so that students would not enter it. After attending classes until about 11.15am, he went to the toilet and waited for the students inside to leave. He then closed the toilet door and windows to prevent screams from being heard. When Ethan went in at around 11.30am, the offender briefly left the toilet to reattach the caution tape before attacking Ethan from behind. AFTER THE ATTACK The offender said he felt "catharsis and regret" after the killing. At about 11.35am, he left the toilet with the axe. He asked a few groups of students to call the police, but they ran away from him. A few minutes later, he was approached by a female teacher and dropped the axe as he was told. She kicked the weapon away from him. A police car leaves River Valley High School on Jul 19, 2021. (Photo: CNA/Calvin Oh) The offender told the teacher that he had killed someone and asked her to call the police. She sought assistance after seeing the victim's body. A male teacher arrived at the scene, moved the axe further away from the offender, and stood between him and the axe. The boy was escorted to the school's general office and arrested when the police and Singapore Civil Defence Force arrived at about 11.50am. HIS PSYCHIATRIC CONDITION IMH psychologist Dr Kenji Gwee assessed that the offender met the criteria for major depressive disorder at the time of the offence. His depression, watching videos of people dying and "misguided curiosity to address existential angst" were factors that contributed to the killing. IMH psychiatrist Dr Cai Yiming assessed that the boy's mental state amounted to an abnormality of mind that would have substantially impaired his criminal responsibility. Dr Cai also noted that the offender was genetically predisposed to develop depression leading to a sense of hopelessness. In subsequent reports, the doctors assessed that if the offender did not have major depression at the time of the killing, he would not have decided to attack the victim with an axe. The offender qualified for the defence of diminished responsibility based on the psychiatric evidence. NOT ANY ORDINARY ASSAULT: PROSECUTION The killing and the public disquiet it has caused are "without precedent in Singapore’s history", Deputy Public Prosecutors Kumaresan Gohulabalan and Sean Teh told the court. "This was not any ordinary assault, but one conducted on a student on the grounds of an educational institution, culminating in the death of the deceased," they said. The prosecutors asked the court to give limited weight to the offender’s mental disorder when assessing his culpability. This was because psychiatric assessments showed he retained control over his actions, including factors that contributed to the killing, and understood their consequences. A condolence message and flowers are seen outside River Valley High School on Jul 20, 2021. (Photo: Tan Si Hui) The prosecutors also said that River Valley High School was aware of the offender’s emotional, behavioural and learning problems. The school had taken "all appropriate actions" and advised his parents to seek external professional help, which they did. But the offender would not share what bothered him and refused help, the prosecutors said. They argued that a sentence of 12 to 16 years in jail would be appropriate to reflect the harm inflicted by the offender, and the outrage felt by the community. EXCEPTIONAL FAMILY SUPPORT, LOW RISK OF REOFFENDING: DEFENCE The defence, led by Mr Sunil with Ms Diana Ngiam and Ms Joyce Khoo of Quahe Woo & Palmer, asked the court to prioritise the offender's rehabilitation. They argued for a shorter sentence as his mental responsibility for the killing was substantially impaired by his depression, and also pointed to his young age and emotional immaturity then. They said the offender has a significant family history of mental illness, and described efforts by him and his family to gain more insight into his condition since his arrest. The youth has been on medication and attended therapy sessions, and his depression was assessed to be in remission. His parents have embarked on graduate education related to youth work to better support their son, and made or planned to make career switches to work in areas related to youth mental health. The defence also pointed to a failure by him and the people around him to appreciate "the wealth of danger signs" around his mental health before the attack. The offender was assessed by IMH to have an adjustment disorder in February 2019, with the doctor finding that school counselling sessions would be enough to manage his condition. "As a result, our client did not receive any external medical help apart from a few school counselling sessions," said the defence. The offender now has exceptional family support and "will not be walking alone after his release", Mr Sunil told the court. Mr Sunil also disagreed with the prosecution on the level of public outrage, saying it was "overstated". Instead, there is support, sympathy and empathy for the offender, he said. JUDGE'S DECISION In her judgment, Justice Hoo said that depression cannot be a licence to kill or harm others, no matter how severe it is. Where an offender still has the ability to understand and reason, depression can only lessen his culpability to a certain extent. In this case, even though the offender suffered from depression for about six months before the killing, he displayed a level of “sheer sophistication and planning” that made it clear he had the ability to think logically and coherently, she said. “Indeed, far from being delusional, incoherent, or irrational, the accused had a factual basis for proceeding as he did,” she said, referring to the “considerable” research he did on the internet before the killing. “To that end, he exhibited a chilling degree of premeditation and cold logic in planning and preparing for the killing.” She noted that the offender struggled with what he intended to do. “He knew there was something wrong with himself. He had the capacity to talk himself out of doing what he intended to do. “Even after struggling with ambivalence for months, and even after his aborted attempt to put his plan into action on Jul 14, 2021, rather than pulling back or resiling from his plan then, he resolved to complete it.” She also said that his depression was only one of three major factors that contributed to his killing, the others being his refusal to get external help and his viewing of the online videos. She also said there was a "disturbing" aspect of the offender's psyche seen in his poems. Justice Hoo added that the effect of the offender's depression on him was already reflected in the prosecution's charging position – for culpable homicide not amounting to murder, rather than murder. She said there were some "promising signs" for the youth in his outstanding O-Level results, his hopes to study the social sciences and help others with mental illness, his newfound faith, and his family rallying around him. "Whether this story might be about redemption is up to the accused. After his release from prisons, he has a long road ahead of him," said the judge. "With his insight into his mental health issues, and with his intelligence and abilities, he has what he needs to make his story one of redemption. "With the help and support of his family and friends, he should see to it that it happens." The punishment for committing culpable homicide not amounting to murder is life imprisonment with caning, or a jail term of up to 20 years with a fine or caning. The killing on school grounds prompted a public outpouring of grief and shock. Days after the incident, Education Minister Chan Chun Sing delivered a ministerial statement in parliament about the impact on the school community and the psychological support given to students and staff. One year after the incident, River Valley High School had increased access to mental health support for its students and staff, such as by having more counsellors. Where to get help: Samaritans of Singapore Hotline: 1767 Institute of Mental Health’s Helpline: 6389 2222 Singapore Association for Mental Health Helpline: 1800 283 7019 You can also find a list of international helplines here. If someone you know is at immediate risk, call 24-hour emergency medical services. Source: CNA/dv(zl)
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