According to an article by Today, a 56 year old man by the name of A Mathavan, was given 12 months of jail term for his latest stealing ‘tour’.
A Mathavan had a long history of petty theft offences and in sentencing him to the imprisonment term, the judge had said that hopefully this latest jail term can provide some ‘aid’ to the man.
Mathavan is also diagnosed to be schizophrenic, which is a mental disorder in where the affected person interprets reality abnormally.
Plead guilty to four counts of theft in dwelling
Mathavan had pleaded to guilty to a total of four counts of the theft in dwelling offence.
Another 10 charges, five of a similar nature, four of harassment and one for using words to wound the feelings of other religions and races were also looked into during his sentencing.
He did not had any legal representation but told the court that he was struggling with mental health issues and had committed the theft because he could not survive by himself.
He also told the judge that he could not find a proper job because he had records with the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) and he also said that he had problems getting financial aid.
One of the charges against him was for stealing bread
Mathavan also said in court that he did not get enough money to survive which was why he stole bread.
He had also stole other items such as paper notebooks, soft drink bottles as well as shopping baskets belonging to the supermarkets.
The following is what happened
On 14 Sept 2021, the unemployed Mathavan went to Popular bookstore to purchase some items.
He then made payment at the cashier and asked the staff if he could leave his purchased items there and return later in the day to pick them up.
The staff then suggested to him that he choose the delivery service which he agreed and left the shop.
The staff then found out after he left that notebooks amounting to $50 were missing.
CCTV footage showed that Mathavan had took it while he was being attended to by the staff.
He then went back to the same Popular bookstore a few days later to steal a few batteries and also harassed another staff using ‘rude’ words.
Offended again a year later
A year later on 13 September 2022, Mathavan went to a Value Dollar shop to take four cleaning products which were worth around $8.50 and while he was stopped by the shop’s employee, he told her that he did not had any money and therefore the Police were involved.
On another two occasions, one in 2021 September and another in 2022 November, Mathavan stole soft drinks, hygiene and cleaning products as well as three shopping baskets.
He was finally arrested in 2022 November after the Police issued a warrant for his arrest for his multiple shop theft offences.
Wounded feelings of another race
On 16 September 2021, he also used words to wound the feelings of a Malay person at a MRT station.
Has history of theft offences
Mathavan had a long history of theft offences dating back to the mid 1980s.
In 2002, he was given ten years of preventive detention.
In court, Mathavan apologised for his actions and asked for leniency and said that he had problems because his mental condition kept relapsing.
For each count of his offence of theft in dwelling, he could have faced up to a jail term of seven years and also be liable to a fine.
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