The Online Citizen

Human Rights Watch: Singapore should commute death sentence in drug case

May 06
16:00 2012

President Dr. Tony Tan Keng Yam of Singapore should commute the death sentence in the heroin possession case of Yong Vui Kong, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to President Tan Keng Yam. Should he deny what could be a final request for clemency, Yong Vui Kong, a 20-year-old Malaysian national, could be executed within weeks.In November 2008, a Singapore court found Yong guilty under the Misuse of Drugs Act for possession of 42.27 grams of heroin. Under Singaporean law, possession of 15 grams or more of heroin carries a mandatory death sentence.

“Executing another young man for a narcotics offense will only reinforce the image of Singapore’s authorities as oblivious to basic rights and due process,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Singapore’s mandatory death sentences clearly violate international human rights standards.”

While Human Rights Watch opposes the death penalty in all circumstances because of its inherent cruelty, Yong’s case raises additional human rights, humanitarian, and due process concerns, Human Rights Watch said. Singapore’s use of the death penalty is inconsistent with international human rights law, statements of UN human rights experts, and UN bodies.

Human rights law upholds every human being’s “inherent right to life” and limits the death penalty to “the most serious crimes,” typically crimes resulting in death. The mandatory nature of Singapore’s drug penalty has been criticized as violating international standards by eliminating the discretion of the court, making it impossible to take into account mitigating or extenuating circumstances and eliminating any individual determination of an appropriate sentence in a particular case.

The law minister, K. Shanmugam, contends that exceptions to the use of the death penalty based on personal circumstances would encourage more people to take up the drug trade, thus undermining Singapore’s anti-drug efforts. Even if these assertions were true – and Singapore declines to routinely make drug-related statistics public – it would not justify imposition of a penalty that so flagrantly violates fundamental rights over less severe penalties that would still act as a deterrent, Human Rights Watch said. There has been little national or international evidence to support the Singapore government’s assertion.

Singapore should join with the many countries already committed to the UN General Assembly’s December 18, 2007 resolution calling for a moratorium on executions and a move by member states toward abolition of the death penalty, Human Rights Watch said. In a March 2010 report, the UN Office on Drugs and Crimes called for an end to the death penalty and specifically urged member countries to prohibit use of the death penalty for drug-related offenses while urging countries to take an overall “human rights-based approach to drug and crime control.”

“Singapore should recognize that its reputation as a modern and highly developed country depends on its aligning with the growing global consensus against the death penalty,” Robertson said.


This article first appeared on Human Rights Watch entitled 'Singapore: 'Commute Death Sentence in Drug Case'

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  • Shahid

    The law minister, K. Shanmugam, is absolutely right. If exceptions to the death penalty are made based on personal circumstances, i would seriously consider a proffesional career as a drug mule. I would simply come prepared with a sob personal story to get out of the death penalty if i get caught.

    • overseas singaporean

      If the madatory death sentence were to changed to life imprisonment, would you consider this professional career?  You will be locked up for life!  This in itself is a deterrent.  

    • joseph

      What a juvenile and undeliberated reply. Obviously the costs of such course of action is much higher than its benefits, only those who are left without much life options would take it, together with Mr Shahid. Think bout it.

    • Legalize_Cannabis

      Come-up with a betteer reason why you support the Death penalty. A 10year old can come up with a better way to debate for it.

  • Abolish the death penalty on Cannabis

    http://singapore-cannabis-awareness.tumblr.com/
     
    Though I cannot say the same about heroine, I believed Singapore has made a big mistake about Cannabis. Spread the information before another life is lost to Cannabis prohibition.

  • son of s

     

    There is no mercy in this Regime. No use to ask for clemency. Your plea will go round and round from president and finally end up with the AG who brought Yong to trial in the first place. Incredibly the AG at the same time dischargd Chia the allegeddruglord of Yong of 26 drug charges. I would urge that AMnesty International focus on why and how Chia can be discharged while Yong has to bear the full and fatal brunt of the Law. In order to explain this, the AG will find out that he may have committed a  crime of huge dimensions. This may soften his stance on Yong. Direct plea for mercy will have no effect on such personalities. Only fear that he will later have to make answers to serious questions of gross partiality leading to a Death Sentence will deter the AG. The AG is god in this country. He is made all powerful in order to take decisive action on the PAP's plolitical opponents. Nowadays he wield his power over any cases when he feels like it. I suspect that the AG has been persuaded by an Elite Law firm in close association with the PAP to release Chia.

    Amnesty International should ask the AG why is it he has put Yong through trial and let Chia the druglord over him go free of  his 26 drug charges.
    The AG is the party who is assigned by Law to forgive Yong of his death sentence. He should be reminded  at this crucial stage before the execution that his antics are observed and questions of this nature  will emerge in great seriousness after Yong is executed. So to save his own skin the AG will think again whether his godly powers can now be used to offer clemency to Yong, which will mean also clemency for himself in his crime of partiality as between the two, Chia and Yong..

    The Amnesty International should put it to the AG that he may have committed a crime of partiality, by choosing to try the mule Yong and setting the druglord Chia free . Yong was then charged with the Death Sentence. Chia was side stepped and protected from the Court's scrutiny.
    When the basis of the process of Law is on a  partiality for the well being of one as against the other, the sentence on this other is questionable according to human reasoning. The Law may not have designated the terminology for such manipulation of the legal process by  the highest offiicial of the Law, the AG, but that does not mean that his partiality can be disregarded.
    As a member of Singapore society, I would like to ask the Amnesty International to ask the AG to explain why he let  off Chia and  tried Yong both of whom are tied up in the same trafficking episode. I would like it be asked of the AG, why is it he released the druglord Chia and held back Yong for trial.
    Lacking the exact legal terminology to describe the AG's behaviour in this Yong/Chia case does not prevent me from pointing out to you AmnestyInternational that  the basis of Yong'd trial which lead to his death sentence is unjust. Thus the decision of the death sentence itself is void or voidable..

     

  • Death Will Not Come Easy

    Yong Vui Kong will die because Tony Tan is too scared to go againtst a dictatorial govt. But the Old Man will also die. God's punishment is for him to die a slow death and his cry for mercy and a quick death will not be heard. So it will be written, so it will be done.

  • Purple

    It's called a LAW. And everyone entering The country is warned about the penalty. As a Malaysian, he's also VERY aware of his neighbour's law, just as we know that carrying the same into his country has the same penalty.
    You may not agree with this but it's what keeps our streets safe. You want something else… Don't come here. Or leave.

    • son of s

      Why is Yong's druglord, Chia set free by the AG?

  • son of s

    The Government does not want a second opinion from any other Law official.  Once the AG has decided that  a man should be tried and if found guilty , no other official can interfere with clemency. Clemency is also the AG's. This is a remarkable arrangement where no second opinion , different from the AG's is to be tolerated. The whole arrangement is uncanny in the extreme. The Amnesty International should do well to  remark on this arrangement which smacks of making certain the will of one man will be followed through. And who directs the AG? 

  • papaya yaya

    Son of S, seem like you have a lot of evidence abut Chia so please help by providing them to the AG so that they have solid ground to charge him. How do you know if Yong is not the druglord than?

    • son of s

      Don't stand on your third leg.

  • the hang man

    the AG of Singapore stinks,God please have mercy on him for the anguished and pain he had caused to all the persons he has sanctioned to be killed. He is a  Serial Killer on the loose.ICJ should take criminal proceeding against him and his employers.

  • the hang man

    cancel my comment

    • worm

      classic case of libel we've got here

  • Dr Tan Tai Wei

    It's not the mere pragmatic disadvantage of not aligning ourselves with the majority of nations. It concerns our moral well-being and the kind of people we make ourselves to become. Hang him, and we couldn't care less, and go on this National Day to hug ourselves, speaking of love, laughing as this President is wont to?

  • son of s

     
    The AG decided that out of the pair, Chia the druglord and Yong his mule, only the mule should go for trial. The druglord Chia is set free of his 26 charges, but still held in custody. It turns out that at the trial the judge delivered the death sentence to Yong for drug trafficking. Yong while awaiting execution is now preparing to submit an application to the President to  forgive him and relieve him of the death sentence. This appeal will be sent by the President to the Cabinet who will be required by Law to ask the AG for his decision whether to lift the Death Sentence on Yong..
    If you notice, the actions start at the AG and returns to the AG  for mercy for the relief of the death sentence. The AG vested with the duty to decide at each junction of the  legal process towards Yong's death sentence  is made extraordinarily powerful in Singapore. It is uncanny.. But the point now is that he the AG brought the brunt of the Law fatally on Yong and  prevented the Law to proceed with the greater offender the druglord Chia. I am sure that such behaviour is against  Justice. If so it may be a violation of the Law or Human Rights by the AG. I urge the Amnesty International to look at this aspect of the  selective application of the Law for Chia and Yong. Perhaps herein lies a chance that the AG may relent and decide to commute the death sentence, so that we the citizenry may forgive him for his lopsided application of the Law on these two men.
    I urge Amnesty International to look at this asymmetrical application of the Law, even after Yong's execution because such a procedure cannot be allowed to be immune  from scrutiny as it is a violation of Human Rights.

  • Mule

    wait till your loved ones is hooked on drugs. Your daughter becomes a whore to earn money to buy drugs and your son becomes a robber who even resorting to rob you. By then lets see whether you will still plea for clemency for these traffickers

    • son of s

      Yes Mute,
      i agree with you that these  traffickers do put many of our chuldren into  deathtraps and prostitutes. So i do not  sympathise with any of the traffickers. But I also see that if the AG can choose who is to head for the death chamber and who to be protected from the  Death chamber, this also is equally bad for society. If I  or my children do the crime they will have to  face the consequences, not more nor less than others. The AG should not be  using his powers to shape the consequences of the Law. 

      • Mule

        Son of s. Thank you for concurring with my view. I do agree with you that the law should be transparent and apply equally under all circumanstances. Only this way then the society have the faith in the system.
        Though the Amnesty Internationl condemned Singapore for having the death penalty,  I am for  it to stay.
         If you are in the position to decide the fate of a criminal that brutally raped and killed a young girl. Will you imposed a death sentence thus bringing justice to the poor girl and her loved ones or to commute the offender to life in prison thus allowing him a chance to live to a ripe old age at tax payer's expense.
        My personnel choice is obvious if the case is proven beyond reasonable doubts.
        There are pure evil people in this world that do not deserved any sympathy. Think of the 911 masterminds. How many innocent lives were lost. How many families have to forever lived with the fact that their loved ones are no longer around just because they happened to be at the wrong place and wrong time.Some may not recover from such trauma. To rub salt into the wounds, these masterminds have make a mockery of the law by resorting to antics play during the trial.
         

    • son of s

      I do not believe that this Regime will offer clemency. I only ask that the AG  practises the Law equally on  all persons.The AG has refused to explain why he let the other one, the druglord Chia go free when he decided that Yong go to trial.
      All these official excuses like silence, confidentiality, sensitivity , irrelevancy etc offered as reasons  by the AG so as not to  make any explanation of hisdifferential treatment on Chia and Yong is against Justice if not against the Law. Finally it is violation of Human Rights. Some countries pratice genocide and other crimes against humanity openly. Some do it cloaking themselves by the Rule of Law. Unjust Institutions are just as lethal to Society as drug traffickers. They do their work much more efficiently because they are supported by the State and  claim that they are exceptionally noble and therefore have the right to do crime against humanity with impunity. The Government Official acting under the Powers of the State have the capacity not only to prostitute our daughters but us all.

  • JayF

    @son
     
    So, not charging someone in court when the chief witness is unwilling and lacking in solid evidence is a denial of human rights.
    You have a very weird definition of human rights. Does  human rights translate into bad governance and wasting of public resources to you?

    • son of s

      A well formed charge rests on several supporting pillars so that if one or a fewpillars fail, the remaining pillars can  continue to uphold the charge. A batch of 26 charges will mean dozens of cross supporting pillars. Yong at best is only one pillar in each of the 26 charges.. When he refuses to testify, other pillars are there to keep the  charges in place. I am talking about well formed charges which I expect  the Singapore prosecutors to  make.The explanation that when Yong does not testify  against Chia all 26 charges fail should not happen  with a normally experienced prosecution which I think the Singapore prosecutors are..
      So Chia's charges have been dismissed for a reason which is not disclosed and which is likely to be dark and illegal.
      We the citizenry cannot endure a AG- prosecutor system which practises partiality especially in capital punishment cases. No amount of State resources can be counted wasted in the course of unravelling the true nature of this particular AG-prosecutor administration of the Justice-crimininal system in Singapore.

  • son of s

    @ JayF The AG should explain  why he is unable to proceed with the 26 charges that the prosecution built up against Chia..
    Instead the AG says that the charges against Chia are irrelevant Is the prosecution so incapable as to write 26 nonsense charges which the AG is so capable to dismiss all at one go?
    I suspect that the AG must have been instructed  to drop the charges against Chia.If so the AG has committed a crime against Yong or against humanity.
    Even after Yong is executed this question will still linger . Why did the AG dismiss all the charges against Yong. No resources should be spared to protect Society from the possible abuse of Power by the AG and the possibility that he will continue to apply asymmetrical Justice on those under his power with impunity.Any millions of dollars poured into getting the AG to talk about his decisions on Chia and Yong  is more worth it than the millions of  taxpayers' money forced into the pockets of Ministers.

    • son of s

      Typo error. "Why did the AG dismiss all the charges against Chia."
      The Singapore Government  servant  is unique in being able to disregard queries, They either keep silent, say that  he matter is confidential , irrelevant, sensitive for the public peace, scold back the questioner for being impudent. in asking questions of them etc. It has become a culture of public service to lord it over the citizenry as unfit and daft. The Singapore public servant from Ministers down hold themselves to be above the ordinary run of  public servants. If it is only arrogance that hold back their full disclosures we can understand but if it is to hide a Crime of huge implications to the Justice in Singapore, their mouths must be priced open at all costs.  

  • JayF

    @son
    You made two basic assumptions in your ramblings
    1) You assume that the 26 charges means that Chia is suspected of 26 different instances where he broke the law, when half of them could be charges that are not directly linked to the act of drug dealing- ie immigration offenses or destroying evidence. Since the majority of the charges were not revealed, there is simply nothing to back your spurious claims. They could of course go to trial and convict him of a lesser crime, but why go through that when they have the Temporary detention to fall back on.
    2) That an experienced prosecution will not throw as many charges as they can against an accused to make the defence prepare as many material as possible and raising the chances of a conviction. Since it's a capital trial, they only need to make a few of the charges stick to hang him. It also raises the pressure for the accused to plea bargain in return for dropping charges since the more charges laid, the worse odds of coming out unscathed.
    Fact is, if they charge and fail to convict him of the hanging crimes, Chia will walk out a free man after several years, and it will be much more difficult to charge him for the same crime further down the road as the courts have already cleared him due to lack of evidence.
    So, can you name me any common law country where the Crown/State prosecution does not have full discretion on who to bring to court? You've dodged this question several times already.

    • son of s

      Why have  I or anyone else including Yong's lawyer and  even you yourself   no idea what is the content of 21 of those 26 charges? It  is because the AG pretends that they are irrelevant to Yong's case and need not be revealed.. This is the type of pernicious silence and  arrogant dismissal of legitimate request by Yong's lawyer for the details of the 21 charges. I however would go further , I want the AG to explain why he discharged  all Chia's  26 charges, just because  Yong will not give evidence against him.As I explained in a previous comment , it is not possible that prosecutors formulate charges that are reliant on one single source, in this case Yong. So that when Yong does not  witness against  Chia all 26 charges crumple. I believe our prosecutors are  of good standing and accomplished criminal investigators and are capable of framing well formed charges that should withstand the failure of just one source. Each well formed charge should depend on several sources of evidence.At any rate, Yong's testimony is not vital to  the truth because he being Chia's mule have a jealous interest that if he is hanged Chia is hanged too. In other words Yong is not the most reliable witness against Chia.His accusation of Chia is only to be expected, tied as they are to the same crime s Master and slave. His not taking the stand to witness against Chia is not so catastrophic  as to  destroy the charges altogether.. I believe that Chia's total discharge blamed on Yong's not witnessing against him is a blatant cop out at the least by the authorities and could be itself a subject for  investigation against the AG. But who, who is to investigate the AG, in this  legal environment.?
      Do you not understand that all 26 charges are discharged? This means the AG has no intention to charge him again for jis masterminding the drug trafficking.Chia  although in custody is virtually free of the drug  trafficking offenses.After Yong is executed , the AG will cause him to be released. 

    • son of s

      Answering your question in the last paragraph. Sure in  most jurisdictions the AG has the full discretion on who to bring to Court.. He has the absolute discretion to bring Yong to trial and Chia to set free. But in most jurisdictions the AG has also  the obligation to put up a written document stating the full  reason for his decision. The reason that have been put up by the AG  that since Yong is not willing to testifying against Chia all 26 of  Chia's charges have to be dropped is too  good to be true for reasons I have explained. That a well  formulated charge depends on multiple sources of  evidence and cannor be demolished if one source fails.. 

  • mice is nice

    S'pore is a unique country with 1st to 3rd world laws. its no wonder S'poreans are such confused lot who cannot move in unison to become 1st world citizens as a whole like other 1st world nations. the best thing is United Nations can't do much to pressure or desuade govts from doing as they deem fit.
     
    best President TT not to explain explicitly what are the limits of S'pore's presidential powers, may turn out to be an international embarrassment judging by the farce kicked up during PE2011. lots of legal mumbo jumbo seems so open to interpretation, its all very grey…

  • JayF

    @son
    So, you're saying that the other charges that Chia faces are directly linked to Yong's own crimes? If they're not, how in the world would they be relevant to a trial of Yong? You're assuming that Yong will have an interest in seeing Chia hung.ie. vengance is a relevant factor. But no evidence supports that.
    And, no most jurisdictions do not have the AG or DA put up written notice he is not intending to pursue charges. He would be writing the notices full time otherwise when you realise every crime that clears the police is decided by the AG's office.
    If you have proof otherwise, please do show me. The UK's Crown prosecution office on their website states clearly that case material are their own, meaning they are not obligated to reveal details of their prosecution, or NOT to prosecute for that matter.
     

    • son of s

      Yong is not Chia's only mule. There is previous to Yong, a man named Koh reported to be Chia's mule too.. You are right all 26 charges need not be related to Yong. It may be related to Koh or even somebody not known to the public or other crimes. 
      A charge on Chia  not related Yong does not mean that it can be discharged. From the reports given to us to read in this  forum Chia seems to be very active in drug trafficking and seems to be a druglord too.
      His criminality apart from Yong is relevant to the Justice system in Singapore and charges not relevant to Yong is still  relevant to the Law and should be actionable instead of being discharged.
      In other jurisdictions there are checks and balances over each government official. The AG in these jurisdictions can be made to speak. When he is caused to speak we will then know why each and every one of the two dozen charges on Chia are dropped in one shot.
      No  it will not occupy the AG full time. The Government is very generous in providing him with all the secretarial manpower for him to write full length books…
      Don;t tell me about State resources that will be wasted when the AG spends time on making written statements of his decisions.These are part and parcel of his work and these are the things taxpayers paid him to do. When things are transparent the citizenry have  a life.
      Don't talk about me giving you proof about Chia's criminality. I am not a one man band.
      I am not  employed in police surveillance nor  the legal system.. I am just a citizen trying to make sense of how and why the AG brought the brunt of the Law on Yong and at the same time let Chia free.This needs the AG  to speak on the matter or write on the matter.
       
       

      • JayF

        And the fact remains that in the trial it was Yong on the dock, not Chia. Chia's alleged crimes are a matter of public interest, but that is also not directly related to Yong's guilt or cupability. Therefore, as far as Yong's crimes are concerned, Chia's alleged status as a drug lord does little to mitigate Yong's own guilt or the fact that he was in fact given and has excercised all his rights as an accused.
        Therefore, on what grounds should Chia's unrelated charges be brought forward as evidence in a trial of Yong? Has Ravi suddenly become the defense counsel for Chia?
        Again you make the claim of a jurisdiction where the AG or local equalvalent can be "made"to speak. Again you have not cited an example of a common law country where this is true or has happened. There are a few dozen Commonwealth countries, surely if what you're claiming is true you can provide at least one example.
        But writing statements on his decisions to prosecute or not is NOT part of the work. Singapore, much like any other common law country does not have the AG or Crown prosecution give a written decision on whether or not to prosecute. Only the High Court or above need do so, and that's because their decisions form case law.
        Actually, if you're speaking of Walter Woon's books, those were written after he left the office of the AG, not before. And he paid the writers himself.
        I am not asking for proof of Chia's guilt. I am asking you where is the proof of the various wild claims you made, like the alleged elite law firm, the alleged cover up and Yong's desire to see Chia hung alongside him. Especially the last one, since Yong has never expressed such a desire in all his statements to the public.

        • son of s

          In Administrative Law reasoned decisions are regarded as the backbone of Natural Justice. If you are not a lawyer yourself ask a competent lawyer about how judiciaries in jurisdictions that derive from British Law all adhere to the requirement that the Judiciary including the AG must make reasoned decisions. in order to make reasoned decisions in the Chia discharge issue the AG has to declare what the 21 charges are about and apply reason from there.
          Instead of of making his decision in a reasoned manner the AG in Singpore chooses to hide his decision under the cloak of irrelevancy.
          I do not wish at this juncture to reveal which Law firm in Singapore is acting as if it were an arm of the Government and can commandeer State Institutions to help it oppress its clients' enemies. When I was  oppressed by the ISD I was advised by the MOH to sue the Government if I feel aggrieved , I had to decline because many have confronted the Government linked personnel in Singapore in Court  and all have been destroyed in one way or another. 

          • JayF

            But this is Criminal law, not criminal law. The AG represents the Executive in court and is seperate from the judicary.
            A reasoned decision also does not imply a written judgement. Discharging the case against an accused due to lack of sufficient testimony IS reasoned decisions.
            The AG would only have to declare what the charges are if Chia's lawyers were to submit to the courts for the charges to be brought to trial or have his client accquited. This is also the sole prerogrative of Chia and his legal representatives since no one else has an interest in the case, not being linked to Chia's crimes.
            Ravi, who represents Yong has no legal grounds to charge otherwise and the Appeals Court in their written judgement has stated quite clearly that Ravi does not have any precedent or other legal ground to stand on.

  • JayF

    "Do you not understand that all 26 charges are discharged? This means the AG has no intention to charge him again for jis masterminding the drug trafficking.Chia  although in custody is virtually free of the drug  trafficking offenses.After Yong is executed , the AG will cause him to be released.
    Chia's charges were discharged not amounting to accquital, meaning the AG reserves the right to bring the same charges against Chia in light of new evidence. If they have no intention of charging him again, then they'd simply discharge them and not contest Chia's lawyer's attempt to get them dismissed.
    The prosecution may act in this manner for various reasons; for example, if it no longer believes that the accused committed the offence, if it feels that the case against the accused is weak, or if it is of the view that further investigations are required to gather evidence for its case. Unless the judge expressly directs otherwise, such a discharge does not amount to an acquittal.[81] This means that if the prosecution is able to obtain additional evidence to bolster its case, it may bring criminal proceedings against the accused again at a later stage.

    • son of singapore

      I have a feeling that this discharge of Chia will just lead to his acquittal  as the mountain peak is already overcome.The public will never know about Chia. Either he has played his cards very well or he is protected. The AG willnot speak about him and so he is safe.
       

      • JayF

        @son
        And on what basis do you base this feeling on? All the known facts so far shows Chia simply did his homework welll, by making sure that the insurance policy-ie- the lives of Yong's family assured that not enough of his underlings will dare to squeal.

        • son of s

          My feeling is  based on my experience with the legal system in Singapore. Once you have surmounted a peak, you are home free because the whole system has an enertia which will not easily be reversed. So when Chia is discharged of all 26 charges at one shot it represents the fact that he has climbed the peak and dangles on the other side. He can only fall freely on the other side..
          It would be interesting to know how Chia dealt with the AG. For example who is Chia's law firm who so capably convinced the AG that Chia should be freed.
          Many other druglords will follow Chia's method of dealing with the Law when they come to know how to deal with the AG like Chia did.

          • JayF

            So according to your experience, Chia will go into freefall off the side of a mountain? One thinks he would prefer the noose.
            Furthermore, how relevant is your experience with the legal system to Chia or Yong's case. Did you have brushes with the law as a member of organised crime? Did you face a hanging offence and was your case one that generated great public interest.
            The legal system tends to deal with different cases and persons differently. Just how relevant is your experience to this.
            You're claiming expertise due to your alleged experience. You're going to have to back up your claims of expertise by showing how relevant your experience is.

  • Legalize_Cannabis

    http://forums.hardwarezone.com.sg/eat-drink-man-woman-16/%5Bdiscussion%5D-cannabis-cancer-treatment-3702542.html
    It is time to Remove the Death Penalty on Cannabis. Please go to this wedsite and read from Page 1 to the last Page with an Open heart. You views on why Cannabis will change.

  • syed riyaz quadri

    dear sir, i am homelass in the city of seattle (wa)our here police department doing crime aginest with me police do not have any evidence to i am doing stealling crime our here and i all so report to the police department same one assault  me but police officer do not assist me,
    i am in (us)since 1994
    i need your help. thank you
    my nationality is (india

  • Marko Ramius

    Look, drugs are bad, in whatever form.  I really do not see how drugs should ever be good for a society that we can forgive mules with total disregard for our citizens all with the sole intention of earning money.
    It is simple: Don't want to be hanged?  Don't come to Singapore with drugs.  How difficult is it to understand?  

  • mice is nice

    seems like this case re-enforces the notion S'pore justice system prefers to target the small fishes while the big fishes roam free.
     
    if the big fishes are so good at covering their tracks, its all the more important for our legal apparatus to up their game. cos the drug trade will not be dealt a significant dent if no big fish is caught.
     
    so how safe are S'poreans from the illegal drug trade? make a guess.

    • son of s

      Once a critical mass of cases show that drug lords always escape the noose while the mules never escape, Singapore will see shiploads of druglords coming onshore with their goods carried by armies of mules.
      Reminds me of the foreign talent deluge into Singapore.

  • son of s

    @JayFI will do not feel inclined tell you my life story to prove to you that it is legitimate for me to anticipate that Chia will be set free after Yong is hanged. I do not have to actually drown myself to know what drowning is like, or eat the hot chilly to know what is hot on the tongue and lips and so on.If you ask a dog to jump out of a 5 storey window it will not do so. I need not show you anything because you are nothing.Perhaps if you can get the ISD on me then you can have control over me.

    • JayF

      If you've never drowned before, how are you going to know the feeling when the water rushes into your nose and lung? You don't actually have to die from it, just get waterboarded and you can experience stimulated drowning. If you've never had real hot chilli, how can you describe accurately the stinging pain your tastebuds experience?
      You've just described two things that really require a first hand experience before you can claim to know it. Seriously, do you even read what you type?
      You can know of this, but to actually know at an intimate level, you've got to experience it before.
      What has dogs got to do with intimate knowledge of the legal system?
      On the contray, you've shown me plenty. Mostly, you're a poor deluded man who's so paranoid because of some bad experiences, he think's he is important enough for the ISD to bother with him.
      I'd ask you to seek medical help so you can live a normal life again, but then again you're pretty entertaining as you are now. So I'll just entertain myself by pointing out the fallacy in your posts and enjoy myself.

      • son of s

        You seem  to be a person who has to actually experience something otherwise you have no prior kmowledge of it. Even a dog knows that it cannot jump out of a five storey building  without hurting itself, even if it has never jumped off any height before. In Russia the best way to corner your political opponent short of eliminating him is to pronounce him mad.That way it can get the police to catch the "mad' man and restrain him in a madhouse  and out of politics. This is exactly the technique you are trying to use on me by asking me to seek medical help for my paranoia.
        If there is a way to question the mediators at our Subordinate Courts , you will  find that a great number of the warring parties there call each other mad when they have nothing else to say.
         
        I can a person like you has been wrapped in cotton wool all your life and can never accept that officials of the Law  are human with human failings which may impact society disproportionately because of their positions of power and in the case of the AG absolute power. For a small state we have invented many ways to make the Rule of Law oppressive.

      • mice is nice

        this is why S'pore should commute death penalty in drug related cases. cos the the sentences have been meted out by people who never came back from the grave, so they continued to make these grave mistakes based on mistaken notions that death penalty has been effective in keeping S'pore safe.

        • son of s

          It appears to me that the mandatory death sentence has and will keep keep Singapore safe from drug mules. But druglords will learn from the druglord Chia how to deal with the Court  system  so that they will never even have to appear in Court. . Then a new phenomena appearing in Singapore is a gathering of druglords safe from the Law because the Law is appeased by hanging drugmules every now and then.
          I have  been asking in this forum why the AG is not made to speak about  why he released Chia and all 26 charges at that. When the AG makes clear to the citizenry his reasons for not pursuing Chia, then we may rest easy on the assurance that Singapore is really safe from the drug menace or that we have simply the appearance of safety but actually we have created a drug route into Singapore.
          This route I promise you will be even more damaging to our society than the Tsunami of foreign labour and the engine for the creation of new citizens which the Government has now fastened its economic strategy on. 

  • son of s

    In Administrative Law reasoned decisions are regarded as the backbone of Natural Justice..Judiciaries in jurisdictions that derive from British Law all adhere to the requirement that the Judiciary including the AG must make reasoned decisions. in order to make reasoned decisions in the Chia discharge issue the AG has to declare what the 21 charges are about and apply reasons from there to elucidate why he decides to give them up..
    Instead of of making his decision in a reasoned manner the AG in Singpore chooses to hide his decision under the cloak of irrelevancy to the Yong case. Surely Chia's criminality extends beyond his collarboration with Chia. His  extensive criminal activity began even before Yong came on the scene . Indeed, the Court has recorded his trafficking with one, Koh. .

    • jayf

      1) Chia isn’t released. He remain in detention under the criminal act. You keep giving the impression that walks a free man when ye us still a prisoner
      2) chia was never brought to trial. So long as there is no trial any the ag wishes to pursue charges at a later date, you don’t reveal any inner workings to an unrelated third party. You speak of chia guilt as established fact when he hasn’t been found guilty of anything

      • son of s

        I know that Chia is still in deteniion. It looks like the authorities are waiting for Yong's demise and then quietly let him go  completely free.As ' mice is nice' says below, Yong will no longer be available as a witness ( in fact in his latest affidavit he now agrees to witness against Chia ). Under such conditions the coast is completely clear for Chia to be released. We will wait and see what happens to Chia  after Yong is gone.
        It it turns out exactly as I predict that Chia is freed after Yong is hanged, then a great danger is faced by Singaporeans. Singapore will be a gathering hole for druglords who will copy what Chia has done to remain free of the Law. Mules will be caught and hanged because they have no resources to influence the State as druglords have. Druglords will be like FTs  in Singapore and accumulate in large numbers continuously.The citizenry will not be able to move the State to deal with them because the AG will prove to be  immovable as it is now with Chia..

  • mice is nice

    if Yong is sentensed to death, its no longer possible to bring him in as a witness. which would be crucial if in future other people would stand shoulder to shoulder as witness.
     
    if all drug mules are sentenced to death, there is no others to mutually support each other… & drug lords or those in the middle will use such loopholes to cover their tracks. all talk of prosecuting at a later date would fall flat as a veneer of hope that justice will be served in future as the mules are no longer around.

    • son of s

      It it turns out exactly as I predict that Chia is freed after Yong is hanged, then a great danger is faced by Singaporeans. Singapore will be a gathering hole for druglords who will copy what Chia has done to remain free of the Law. Mules will be caught and hanged because they have no resources to influence the State as druglords have. Druglords will be like FTs  in Singapore and accumulate in large numbers continuously.The citizenry will not be able to move the State to deal with them because the AG will prove to be  immovable as it is now with Chia..

  • lockelberal

    Dear Son,  

       Why do u keep on repeating absolute bald face lies.  Koh turned prosecution or state witness and was willing to tetstify against Chia.  He had his charges reduced.  

        Yong was only willing to be "compelled"  he was not a states witness and was in fact a hostile non coorperative witness. 

         Yong will be hanged because of his refusal to cooperate with the state and dies protecting Chia.  Koh lives because he sings like a canary implicating Chia.  get the diff.  

         Btw because each case is so different, Prosecutorial discretion is not examined very closely under all systems. 

    Locke

    • mice is nice

      when you said Chia was implicated by Koh, what charges was Chia then charged with?

    • son of s

      @Lockliberal.
      Look at Chia from the Koh angle.
      What did Koh sing about about Chia? Why has his singing only reduced his own charges but has no effect on Chia who is now free of any charges?.Singing  is always a zero sum game. Between the pair Koh and Chia, Koh gains, Chia has to lose at least an equivalent amount.What then is the impact on Chia by Koh?
       

  • Lockeliberal

    Mice, 

       Chia was charged with the 26 which Son of S and the Rest keep on harping about.    The option at the juncture really are.  

    a.  One circumstantial witness for the prosecution. 26 charges or more but all dependant on one witness , and no physical evidence , try for a conviction.  

    b. Two circumstantial witnesses, 26 charges plus six or four from Yong, but each story reinforcing the other, try for a conviction. 

    No lawyer in the world would fault the AGC for playing it safe and not being a hero.   
     
     
    Locke

     
      
     

    • son of s

      @Lockeliberal. You mean each and every one of the 26 charges on Chia  is formulated to stand on fall on the performance of one witness, Yong.
      If this is so the prosecution team must be babies gurgling in their cribs.
      Any  well formed charge must rely on multiple sources, so that if one or two sources  fails, the charge can still stand. The implication of the total discharge of all 26 charges is that all 26 charges are  weak, breakable by Yong singlehandedly?
      Do I hear babies gurgling?

    • mice is nice

      would it be fair to say keeping Yong alive by imprisonment is also playing it safe? since Yong is pivotal to the 26 charges against Chia?
       
      thanks for your reply, really appreciate.  :)

  • Lockeliberal

     
     
     

  • lockeliberal

    Dear Mice, 

       Koh is alive because he cooperated with the state, he sang like a canary and cut a deal.  Yong has not expressed any willingness to sing like a canary or be a coorperative states witness.  but in fact insists on his right to be "compelled" or forced to testify as a hostile witness. 

    locke

    • mice is nice

      eh, okie. but how far did that song bird implicate Chia? i mean, this is not a singing competition or some form of sick entertainment like the Hunger Games.
       
      my impression is that the song bird's (Koh) singing like no power wan…
       
       

  • Locke

    Dear Son.  

       The charges against Chia based on Koh's evidence were based on Koh's testimony at best.  Do remember that if he is a "mastermind" as alleged and not the actual courier , then he if  Yongs SOP was followed would have handed the drugs to Koh who was then caught with the drugs.  

        The charges from Koh's where 26 or 56 for one trip or twenty trips, all rest on the testimony of Koh.  

       Is that sufficient ?  Or is the AGC justified in having two states witness both corrobarating each others story so as to gurantee a higher chance of conviction  I believe they are .  
     
     
    Locke
     

    • son of s

      But Koh benefitted from his witnessing againgst Chia. Chia should should not also benefit. It is a zero sum game. Koh gets something and that something must come from Chia.So when Koh is set free  we expect he must have testified some noteworthy thing against Chia. which will stick on Chia.Now the authorities are claiming that  they have nothing Chia. This  looks mighty suspicious.
      I have a feeling  that Koh, Chia and Yong are early players in the drug game.Druglords are watching closely as to how the State legal system can be bent to their advantage. If a pattern is set up where only mules are executed and drug lords get scot free , more and more operations will be carried out in Singapore. Like the deluge  of foreign labour and foreign talent into Singapore we will see Singapore as a drug smuggling haven where the entrepreneurs are certain of safety and the coolies are desperate enough to risk it.Druglords like FY will be specially favored by the State because both bring prosperity to the Elites.

  • Locke

    Dear Mice. 

       Enough to warrant charges by the police, but with the AGC demanding more certainty and proog they seem to require two singning canaries, 

    locke

    • mice is nice

      of course, the discretion lies with the AGC. but sending Yong to the gallows tilts the situation more towards uncertainty.
       
      a bird in hand is worth 2 in the bush, now AGC has 2 canaries in their hands. it may only be a matter of time Yong as the other "canary" sings his song. a dead canary means no more songs.
       
      not forgetting the song may help Yong (the other canary) avoid death!

  • Lockeliberal

    Dear mice
    Alas the offer to Yong is time limited.  AGC n the clock does not tick forever.  
     
    Locke

    • mice is nice

      this is where the legal technicalities are at odds with the spirit of the law.
       
      the bottom end of the drug trade do not enjoy some benefit of doubts as others. while AGC does not see the need for more certainty to hang Yong, AGC needs or wants more certainty to convict Chia.
       
      it does indicate MDP for drug related offenses need to be tweaked to stay relevent & effective. is there a hurry for the songs to end? have all avenues been exhuasted in making Yong "sing his song"?

      • Locke

        Dear Mice 
        The case against Yong has been proven and he has been convicted.  There is o need for more certainty,  the case against chia is not proven, there is a need for greater certainty in the evidence n testimony required. 
        Mice offers were made as late as this year for Yong to turn states witness like Koh, he insisted on being compelled and non coorperation with the prosecution.  
        At some point if u are on death row and an offer is on the table you grab it and pray, you most certainly do not reject it as too little to late.  And the choice is.his now and here and waiting another year or two would make no difference.
         
        Locke

  • mice is nice

    the need for more certainty is fair, as AGC should always err on the side of caution.
     
    as for not grabbing the offer. is the analogy of a man & a woman being stuck in the stalled lift, relevent? would men not mostly grab the woman who has nowhere to run? is there no consequence of such an act?
     
    what makes you so sure that Yong would not budge given time & a different set of terms (of offer) on the table?
     
    AGC wants something (more certainty), i am sure Yong also has his concerns that he may rather be sent to the gallows himself. maybe more effort needs to done to make the "canary" sing. it does not always have to be a hard bargain.

    • son of s

      The AG is not erring on the side of caution like you said. Nor does the AG want more certainty with respect to Yong. In fact I think that the AG is eager to shut up Yong forever and his death sentence is the AG's  instrument of  starting clean wiping away all vestiges of knowledge about Chia. 
      Here's why I think thisis the situation with the AG.
      Yong has reversed his 2007 decision not to witness against Chia. In an affidavit dated 2 March 2012 he stated that he is willing to be a State Witness. In his own words, " I am prepared to give a statement to the CNB implicating Chia and eventually testify against Chia in Court."
      You can read this by googling  the article in TOC : "Yong Vui Kong files affidavit alleging unequal treatment,"This statement is found in the  last paragraph  of his March 2012 affidavit..
      Why does the AG not take it up?
      What legal procedure can be more important than hearing out Yong's testimony against Chia , now that he says he is prepared to tell about Chia.
      You  can see that the AG is not interested to hear Yong  witness against Chia. .It is not the quest for certainty or  the need for caution, it is just that things are now just fine, Koh free, Chia  free and Yong to hang. Nothing more need be done but wait for Yong's execution.After Yong's execution , Chia will be quietly freed from dentention.If at all the authorities issue a statement about the Chia- Yong saga, it will be the triumphant warcry of the Ruling Masters, " Yong hanged. Let's move on."

    • son of s

      Dear friend, Yong has indeed budged from his initial unwillingness to witness against Chia in 2007. The death sentence meted to him has woken up his sense of what is important.
      Thus Yong has reversed his 2007 decision not to witness against Chia. In an affidavit dated 2 March 2012 he stated that he is willing to be a State Witness. In his own words I quote, " I am prepared to give a statement to the CNB implicating Chia and eventually testify against Chia in Court."
      You can read this by googling  the article in TOC : "Yong Vui Kong files affidavit alleging unequal treatment,"This statement is found in the  last paragraph  of his 2 March 2012 affidavit..This statement also shows that Yong when he does witness is not a compelled witness but simply a  witness.. Many  supporters of the AG-prosecutors team insist that Yong is a compelled witness and so his witness is no good. Here again we see that the legal authorities and their supporters. are bent in stopping Yong from witnessing.

  • Family Man

    Only the arrogant and self-righteous would consider the death penalty acceptable.

    • son of s

      The death penalty in a case like the Koh-Yong-Chia saga where the one of them is eliminated is a sure device to safeguard the other two. In this case Koh and Chia. Especially Chia as he is not sentenced yet.
      If I a lay citizen can see the the death of Yong as Chia's protection, I am sure many people will see it in the same light. Who is  protecting Chia? and why?

  • lockeliberal

    Dear Son, 

       You are as usual lying.  The correct statement ins his affadavit is not that he is willing to go back as a wtiness, it is that he is willing only to GO BACK as a "compelled witness. "

        The AGC has no interest in an "uncoorperative " wtiness.  Or would you care not to address the issue between " compelled" and "coorperative " 

    Locke

  • son of s

     
    It is not a matter of my lying. Lying does not cover up Yong's own words.. Yong's affidavit is on the face of the record. Legal historians will have recourse to it when Yong is gone and they will find that at the 11 th hour of his death  the greatest injustice is done to Yong. When he decides to witness against Chia, the legal team of AG and prosecutors refuse to hear his witnessing. The supporters of the legal team including  lockeliberal advance the peculiar notion that  Yong is willing only to be a "compelled" witness. Yong does not say this. This is a strange interpretation of normal language of Yong's affidavit. The last part of the last para of Yong's March 2012 affidavit.where Yong requests of  the  Authorities " …… that I am called a compellable witness……:" The term "compellable witness" properly describes Yong in a way that will not describe me  or lockeliberal or Robert Teh or anyone who is not involved in that trafficking event  if we  intend to witness against Chia. :"Compellable witness " means that  the State can compell Yong to witness against Chia if it so required.  Or  in Yong's own words, " …at all material times, I could be compelled by the Prosecutor to testify against Chia." Which is true. But for reasons of his own the Prosecutor  has not  caused Yong to be a "Compelled witness." So while Yong was compellable he is yet to be compelled.
    The distinction between Compellable and Compelled is significant. Compellable is true of Yong because he took part in the trafficking. But Compelled is not yet exercised on him by the State and so he is not a Compelled Witness..
    Thus Yong is saying what is absolutely true of the legal   nature of his situation. The State has not forced him to witness. Yong remains a compellable witness.  
    Though  Yong is a compellable witness that does not prevent him from being a State Witness. Yong has now decided to be a State Witness by his words, " I am prepared to give a statement to the CNB implicating Chia and eventually testify against Chia in Court." By this Yong means that he wants to become a State Witness against Chia. 

    I hope the AG and prosecutor team does not stop Yong from being a State Witness. If they do that it amounts to them stopping evidence against Chia  to flow out of a key figure.That would be very worrying for everyone who walks about in Singapore.

  • Lockeliberal

    Dear Son, 

       "  The state has not forced him to be a witness. "
     
    Yes correct,  The state has not forced him to be a witness which means 1.  He has not been coorperating  2.  He has not turned witness for the state or prosecution like koh  .  
     
    A witness for the state or the prosecution HAS NO NEED TO BE FORCED, cooperates fully willingly, sings like a canary and is owned body and soul by the prosecution.  

    You can adopt your own definition for a states witness but the key difference is the state wanting a coorperative witness like Koh and Yong wanting to be forced.

    Locke

    • son of s

      Do not cherry pick my writings out  of context. True  I said that the State has not forced Yong to witness. But I  also went on to say  that Yong has now agreed (unlike in 2007 when he disagreed to witness )to witness voluntarily as stated in his affidavit of 2 March 2012, " I am prepared to give a statement to the CNB implicating Chia and eventually testify against Chia in Court." Any person will read this to mean that Yong is now ready to witness voluntarily.?Why does the AG not take up Yong's offer to witness?

  • lockeliberal

    Dear Son
       " The state has not forced him to becomes a witness, he remains a compellable witness. "

       The term compelled was use in the Affadavit by Ravi.  Yong statement on a willingness ended with it saying that he must be "compelled"  Yong's offer to be a witness was contingent on being forced ,  Yong was in no way a willing coorperative witness
     
     
    Locke
     

    • son of s

      Yong was not willing to witness in 2007 but his latest statemnt in his affidavit says that he is now willing to witness against Chia. It is now up to the Ag to take him on his offer.
      Because of his connexion with Chia, he will always be technically a compellable witness until his death.
      The point is , the state will not compell him to witness, reasons being as you stated. The extraordinary point of it all is that even when he offers to witness, the State  refuses to accept him to witness against Yong.
      You are right when you say that  I may have my own views about Yong's witnessing which you disagree. I am not Yong's lawyer and have no connection with him or his case. I am just putting up my comments as an onllooker. The Amnesty International and other Human Rights Organizations are becoming more and more active. If the PAP is no longer the Ruling Party in Singapore, people may start toask why is it that Yong was stopped by the AG when he offered to witness against Yong, even if his offer was at the 11 th hour of his execution. But again, it may be that the PAP reigns forever and nobody cares about Justice for Yong or the safety of the citizenry when drug mules are never brought to trial for one reason or another.

  • son of s

    It strikes one as very peculiar that the AG is given so much power that he becomes a one stop shop as far as Crime and Punishment is concerned.In  Yong's case, he directed that Yong be tried and at the same time discharged all 26 charges on Chia, Yong's druglord. Then when Yong got  the Death Sentence who must he ask for clemency, the AG again. Yong will appeal to  the President   who must delegate the matter to the Cabinet, who in turn must  send the appeal tothe AG for decision. It is as if the country is short of officials to be in charge of each junction of the legal process.With such powers the AG can singlehandedly destroy anyone. Why such total powers in the hands of one man?

  • son of s

    That Yong at the 11 th hour offered to witness against Chia in his March 2012 affidavit  and was rebuffed by the AG is significant  when this case is reviewed at some later time. It is especially significant when regard is had to the all encompassing powers of the AG, who decided to put him to trial and let his druglord free and who later comes to decide his clemency from the death  sentence meted to him. Except for the judge meting out the death sentence to Yong ( even this is mandatory ). the whole  series of legal events  form  a closed loop with no intervention from any other official permitted  by Law.
    Such parsimony may be efficiency at its highest.Or it may be something distasteful even violating  human rights and Natural Justice. 
     

  • lockeliberal

    Dear Son, 

      He is offering only if he is "compelled : that is not an offer of coorperation.  Why should the state be lenient if he does not coorperate . 

    Locke

    • son of s

      Since you have locked yourself on the  word ":compelled " ,  I'll drop  it. and look at your other fixations.. Readers can judge for themselves whether you are right or wrong.
      Now lets focus on your next sentence which contains an unwarranted  presumption, " Why should the State be lenient if he does not coorperate."
      Did I  mention anything about the State being lenient? I never entertain the thought that the Singapore Government can be lenient for nothing.The Singapore Government is never lenient if  you beg of it. No such hope . Its only when the Government official feels that he himself is in danger  that he will accede to a  request for leniency or for any favor. The AG will never give an inch to Yong unless he feels threatened by the possibility that his asymmetrical actions thus far on Yong and Chia can backfire on him one day in the future.
       

  • Locke

    Dear Son
    If he coorperates fully , the state can be lenient to him as it was to Koh.  leniency is about cutting a deal,  in any system in any country.  leniency is not about the state bending backwards to cut a deal,  Yong is convicted and on death row, leniency is shown in offering a deal which he rejected because he wanted to be compelled,  Yong is in no position to bargain for a deal on his terms.  
     
    Locke

    • son of s

      Based on your explanation what did Chia the drug lord  do to get the mother of  lieniency from the State?

  • lockeliberal

    Dear Son. 

       Legal leniency no. you have to be convicted and then deal  or admit to guilt in exchange for a deal for that to be legal leniency.  

        The State decided not to prosecute Chia.  The state DETAINED and imprisoned Chia without trial hardly an example of leniency.  The reasons for the caution in not prosecuting Chia, and the need for two indepedent corrobarating witnesses have been explained. 

    Locke

  • son of s

    By a systematic  culling of drug mules and  protecting druglords, Singapore will soon  be host to drug lords the world over, just as it is now the champion home of foreign talents and tax evaders.

  • Jimmy

     
    Some Singaporeans (according to illusion of labels) are a bunch of mean, selfish, arrogant, myopic, nasty people who are baying for blood, in their shortsighted zeal for the law (such as an eye for an eye), and caring only for their own miserable comfort, not willing to consider others' backgrounds, not wanting to be gracious? They are blinded by the law, so to speak, that is man's justice (not divine justice).
     
    Death penalty is just a cop-out, an avoidance of addressing the root cause of the issue, such as drug trafficking. Education is an effective deterrent, not punishment, because usually people err out of ignorance of consequences. 
     
    Ruling and controlling people by fear only keeps them immature – outwardly, they may behave well, but inside they are full of rebellion. No one is transformed by the law. Only grace and unconditional love has the power to transform people from the inside out.
     
    The law only makes people look good on the outside, but inside they are full of hypocrisy.
     
    We would rather have people who are led by love from within, and do things out of kindness from the heart because they want to, not because they have to.
     
    When people are led by love from within, they will naturally not end up doing things like trafficking in drugs, knowing these are harmful.
     
    Education involves much investment in time and efforts. There is no short cut. It may not show results immediately. Death penalty, on the other hand, is just a lazy idea for a quick-fix solution. In fact, it does not solve the problem at all – it is like putting a band-aid over a deep wound. The only lasting solution is education and raising our vibrational frequencies of love.
     

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