Amos Yee has been sentenced to four weeks imprisonment, for charges relating to creating a video criticizing Lee Kuan Yew.
He will serve one week for posting obscene materials and three weeks for wounding the religious feelings of Christian in his video calling Lee Kuan Yew a “horrible person”, and the sentenced is to be served consecutively.
The sentence has also been backdated from 2 June, which means Yee technically goes free today.
Yee also has to go for mandatory counselling, which the teenager has agreed to.
Yee’s medical report said that he does not suffer from any mental disorders, but instead needs mentoring. Amos has agreed to counselling and mentoring from a doctor at Raffles Hospital.
TOC understands that Yee had instructed his lawyer Alfred Dodwell to lodge an appeal to claim that he had not wounded religious feelings or distributed obscene image in the first place.
The Prosecution had decided not to press for reformative training, which will see Yee instituted for at least 18 months, and go for a jail term because of what was described as a “seismic shift” in attitude on Yee’s part.
It was noted that Yee has voluntarily removed the material and signed an undertaking to not post on sensitive issues anymore. “Amos has admitted to his guilt and promised not to re-offend”, said the Prosecution, because he understands issues of law and racial harmony.
Nevertheless, “it is critical to again reiterate that this case is not about freedom of speech or diversity of views”, but about the abuse of these freedoms.
The Prosecution also said that Yee was the one who had chosen the path that led to his time in remand because he breached bail conditions and rejected probation.
Yee’s trial has attracted international attention, with protests held in Singapore’s Hong Lim Park, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Malaysia’s Penang calling for the Singapore government to free him.
International human rights organisations have also labeled Yee a prisoner of conscience.
Yee has thus far served a total of more than 50 days in remand, either at Changi Prison or the Institute of Mental Health for psychiatric assessment.
The Online Citizen understands that he was sent to the Accident & Emergency department of Changi Hospital on Sunday night, but has since returned to IMH today morning.
No reason has been given, but TOC understand from his mother that Yee’s blood glucose level has dropped, he had been feeling giddy and depressed, and had not been eating or sleeping well.
In the course of his trial, various human rights groups have called for his release in respect to the rights of a child.
“The Singapore government has demonstrated a shameful disregard for freedom of expression and the rights of the child in the way it has treated Amos Yee,” said Phil Robertson, Deputy Director of the Asia Division at Human Rights Watch, earlier today. “By holding him in remand and other forms of detention for over 50 days, the authorities have seriously abused his rights for simply voicing political opinions not popular with the government – and calling this a “crime” when his actions should never have been criminalized in the first place.”
“If Amos Yee is sentenced to additional time in a prison or reform training center, this will be yet another incredible injustice to him and mark a further decline in Singapore’s already poor record of respecting free expression. The powers that be in Singapore should recognize that justice can only be served by immediately and unconditionally releasing Amos Yee.”