An AETOS auxiliary police officer was arrested for suspected involvement in an armed robbery of a moneylender in Jurong Gateway Road near Jurong East MRT station, said the Singapore Police Force (SPF) on Wednesday (14 Apr).
The 38-year-old on-duty officer had allegedly walked into the moneylender on Monday afternoon (12 Apr) with a gun, and showed the staff there a note which read: “This is a robbery, don’t shout. I got gun in my pocket. Put all the money in the bag.”
According to the SPF, the staff proceeded to hand over cash amounting to more than S$24,000 to the said officer, after which the suspect fled the scene.
The police were alerted to the incident at about 3.55pm on Monday. The culprit was apprehended within five hours.
The nationality of the suspect was not mentioned.
Footage from the police and the shop’s CCTV cameras identified the man as an AETOS auxiliary police officer, as well as help from other AETOS staff.
The arrest was made without causing any harm to the public “given the risk that the robber was allegedly carrying a firearm”, said Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police How Kwang Kee, director of the Criminal Investigation Department.
According to the SPF, the man had reported to work at the company’s headquarters earlier that day and had drawn his firearm prior to being deployed.
He later changed out of his uniform, and left the premises with his firearm but without authorisation, and allegedly committed the crime. He then reported back to the headquarters, changed into his uniform, and took the company van to where he was deployed for the day.
Investigations revealed that the officer had allegedly deposited part of the stolen money into the bank account of a 34-year-old woman, a friend. He also used some of the money to repay debts to unlicensed moneylenders, said the police.
The woman was also arrested for dishonestly receiving stolen property.
The man is due to be charged in Court on Wednesday with unlawful possession of arms or ammunitions, which is punishable with life imprisonment and no fewer than six strokes of the cane.
The woman, who will also be charged on the same day, faces charges of dishonestly receiving stolen property, which carries a sentence of up to give years in jail, a fine, or both.
Eight other people, aged between 16 and 48, have also been arrested for the same offence in connection to this case.
Of the stolen money, about S$17,500 have been recovered by the police. Efforts are being made to recover the rest while further investigations are ongoing.