Wednesday, 12 November 2014

SMRT train Vandalised Again

Update 21 Nov 2014
Singapore halts ‘trip to Australia’ with flogging charges for alleged vandalism

TWO young German men reportedly on their way to Australia for a working holiday were charged today with breaking into a Singapore metro depot and spray-painting graffiti on a train, offences punishable by jail time and flogging with a cane.

Andreas Von Knorre and Elton Hinz, both 21, were charged at a district court with committing trespass and vandalism in the early hours of November 8. The Straits Times newspaper said in a report today the two men had visas to work in Australia.

The two men were extradited by neighbouring Malaysia yesterday after being apprehended at Kuala Lumpur International Airport as they were leaving for Australia.

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2 German citizens arrested for vandalism at SMRT Bishan depot

Two 21-year-old German citizens have been arrested at Kuala Lumpur International Airport this morning for their alleged involvement in an SMRT train vandalism case, reported The Straits Times.

The duo are suspected to have vandalised an MRT train at the Bishan SMRT depot on Nov 8. Police said mobile phones, laptops, cameras and three spray nozzles were found in their possession when they arrested the men.

Criminal Investigation Department Director Tan Chye Hee said that the pair were supposed to depart for Australia but a warrant of arrest was issued by the Singapore State Courts for their apprehension.

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SMRT train vandalism 'most likely inside job'
A photo of the vandalised SMRT train at Bishan Depot shows graffiti that is more elaborate compared with the previous case in May. -- PHOTO: ST READER

SMRT has yet to arrive at a firm conclusion on its latest vandalism case, but an early assessment suggests that disgruntled workers or vendors could be behind it.

It also appears that the vandals had more time to do their mischief at Bishan Depot than in May, when another train was targeted.

A photo of the vandalised train obtained by The Straits Times showed graffiti that was more elaborate this time around, although the graffiti in May's case also stretched across two sets of train doors.

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[photo credit: The Straits Times, picture of vandalised train in May this year]

Was someone working in SMRT so unhappy that he vandalised a train at the Bishan depot? It looks like this could be the case.

SMRT is still investigating the vandalism of one of their trains, which occurred last Saturday morning.

It is believed that unhappy worker or vendor might have spray-painted the train.

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SMRT train in Bishan Depot found vandalised

Graffiti spray-painted on train's exterior; no intrusion was detected at depot

For the fourth time in four years and the second time this year alone, police were called to an SMRT depot yesterday to investigate a case of possible vandalism.

This time, the graffiti is believed to been spray-painted in various colours on the outside of a train at Bishan Depot. It was discovered yesterday morning before the train started service.

Police officers went to the Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1 premises after receiving a call at about 6.40am. In the afternoon, the police confirmed they were investigating a case of vandalism and that investigations were ongoing.

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SMRT train vandalised a fourth time

An SMRT train was vandalised yet again yesterday (8 Nov).

Graffiti was discovered on the exterior of an SMRT train at Bishan depot early in the morning just before the train was put into service.

LTA said the incident has been reported to the police. It added that it takes a serious view of the incident and is investigating with the police and SMRT. This is believed to be the fourth vandalism incident involving SMRT in 4 years.

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An SMRT train was found vandalised with graffiti at Bishan depot on Saturday morning
Bishan train depot has been hit by its third case of vandalism

The Land Transport Authority said graffiti was discovered on the exterior of an SMRT train early Saturday morning (Nov 8). It is the second incident to take place at the depot, in just over six months.

Staff discovered that a train was spray-painted with graffiti, before it was put into service. Police said they were alerted to the incident at about 6.40am. LTA said it takes a serious view of the matter and is working with the police and SMRT on the investigations.

The latest incident comes on the back of a similar case in May this year. Back then, a red scrawl with traces of white - measuring three metres long and one metre high - was found on a train's middle carriage. In August 2011, a train at the depot was also vandalised.

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Another train vandalised at SMRT Bishan depot
Local public transport operator SMRT has lodged a police report on a case of vandalism at its Bishan depot on Monday morning

This is the second instance of vandalism at SMRT's Bishan depot.

The first case took place in August 2011, where graffiti was discovered on a northbound train.

In another incident of a MRT train being vandalised, Swiss national Oliver Fricker and his British friend Dane Alexander Lloyd broke into SMRT’s Changi depot and vandalised a train in May 2010.

Police take fingerprints of SMRT employees
The graffiti on the vandalised train appeared haphazard, unlike in the past two cases of defaced MRT trains, which involved well-defined work

Police have taken fingerprints of SMRT staff working during the early hours of May 5 - the day that a train was found vandalised just before it left the Bishan depot to start its service.

The Straits Times understands investigators are looking at all leads, including the possibility that the act of vandalism - the third which SMRT has encountered in four years - was perpetrated by staff or contractors.

However, they are not ruling out outsiders, though there is no sign of trespass. Sources said investigators are reviewing the footage of all video cameras in the vicinity of the defaced train.

Bishan SMRT depot vandalism may have wider security implications, say observers

More must be done to strengthen security at Singapore's key installations, said observers.

Commenting on the recent case of vandalism at the Bishan SMRT depot, they said the incident may have wider security implications.

On May 5, a train at the depot was apparently spray-painted with graffiti. This is the third time vandals have struck a key transport facility in four years.


This is not the first time that an SMRT train has been vandalised at the Bishan Depot. In fact, security measures at the depot were supposed to have been strengthened after the first incident in August 2011.

Another interesting thing is that despite the increased security at the Depot, the vandals have not yet been caught by authorities. In contrast, the other vandalism case this week, which saw phrases such as “F* the PAP” written on a Toa Payoh Block saw swift investigations with the offenders rounded up the vandals just two days later.

Is there no security footage to view at the Bishan Depot which was supposed to see heightened security measures?  Or are the authorities just putting more effort into the 2nd case because of what was written?
Security breach: SMRT train vandalised yet again

It is the second time SMRT trains at Bishan Depot have been vandalised. The first time was in August 2011.

SMRT confirmed that one of its trains was vandalised.

It has made a police report and is helping police with investigations.

SMRT train vandalised with graffiti

It is believed that this is the third incident involving SMRT trains in recent years. SMRT has previously been fined $200,000 and $50,000 for two separate security breaches at its depots.

In May 2010, two vandals cut through the fence of SMRT’s Changi depot and spray-painted graffiti on one side of a train. One of them, Swiss national Oliver Fricker, was given seven months’ jail and three strokes of the cane, while his accomplice, Briton Lloyd Dane Alexander, remains at large. With regard to the caning of the Swiss at the time, Human Rights Watch said the punishment is inhumane.

In August 2011, there was another intrusion at the Bishan Depot and one of the SMRT trains was spray-painted with the words “Jet Setter’s”. It’s unclear what sort of graffiti was painted on SMRT train this time but on Wednesday (7 May), when anti-PAP graffiti was painted on the wall of the rooftop of a HDB block, the police were able to make arrests on 5 suspects 2 days later (9 May). Police said investigations are ongoing for the SMRT case.

SMRT train in Bishan depot vandalised

What the article omitted was that the fate of the previous Bishan depot vandals who painted ‘Jet Setter’s’ remains unknown to this day. I’m also surprised to read that Lloyd Dane Alexander is still on the Interpol manhunt list since 2010, and has been all but forgotten. Meanwhile we’ve apprehended, quite speedily I must say, 5 boys who vandalised a Toa Payoh rooftop , a solo vandal for desecrating the Cenotaph, and a woman ‘street artist’ responsible behind ‘My Grandfather Road’, all within days of their violation. The only explanation as to why our Police and Interpol combined still have trouble finding Lloyd, dead or alive, over these FOUR YEARS is that he may have, along with the ‘Jet Setters’, jettisoned himself into outer space.

According to the Sunday Times (Vandals strike Bishan MRT depot, 11 May 2014), it appears that the vandals’ work wasn’t as pretty as that of ‘McKoy and Banos’, a ‘wordless scrawl 3m long and a metre high’. There was also NO physical breach of the fence, so whoever gave SMRT the slip must have picked up a stealth skill or two from the Toa Payoh vandals. Why aren’t these people recruited as SAF spies and saboteurs already, elite soldiers adept at scaling fences and buildings more than 20 storeys high?

In case you’re wondering where the money from the previous $200,000 fine goes, it’s into the Public Transport Fund to help needy families with transport fares. Which means for this serious breach of security, SMRT is penalised by giving money to LTA, who in turn transfers it to people who need the MRT and its buses the most i.e the money ultimately GOES BACK to SMRT. In comparison, train disruptions in 2011 cost SMRT $2 MILLION. Today, our trains still get disrupted, and occasionally someone still breaks into a depot to vandalise it.

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An SMRT train was vandalised at the Bishan MRT Depot earlier this week

Police said they received a call on 5 May at 6.17am requesting for assistance at the depot located along Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1.

It is the second time SMRT trains at Bishan Depot have been vandalised. The first time was in August 2011.

SMRT confirmed that one of its trains was vandalised.

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Train at Bishan depot vandalised; police investigating
A man jogs past the SMRT Bishan depot which has reinforced steel fences. This is one of the measures SMRT has taken to beef up security after past lapses in May 2010 and August 2011. - ST FILE PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

A train at SMRT's Bishan depot was vandalised, in the third such incident here in four years.

Police said they received a call early on Monday morning at 6.17am, requesting assistance "at a premise along Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1".

When the police arrived, a case of vandalism was reported, said a spokesman, who added that investigations are ongoing.

SMRT train vandalised earlier this week

An SMRT train was vandalised at the Bishan MRT Depot earlier this week.

Police said they received a call on 5 May at 6.17am requesting for assistance at the depot located along Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1.

It is the second time SMRT trains at Bishan Depot have been vandalised. The first time was in August 2011. SMRT confirmed that one of its trains was vandalised.

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Singapore ‘Very Concerned’ Over 2 Train Vandalizations in 2 Years

An SMRT train was found vandalized on Wednesday morning, in the second such incident in two years.

In a statement, operator SMRT said a train officer discovered graffiti on a northbound train and it was pulled out of service. Initial investigations indicate a breach in the fence at Bishan Depot where the train was parked.

SMRT said the breach occurred at a location where upgrading works to the security measures were being scheduled.

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MRT train vandalised at Bishan depot

Another MRT train has been vandalised in an apparent security breach at a depot, the second case in two years.The train was then put into service before the vandalism was discovered.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said in a statement that it was disappointed at SMRT's failure to prevent another security breach at its depot.

In May 2010, a Swiss national and his British friend broke into a depot and vandalised a train. The vandalism went undetected until commuters noticed the train in service and posted videos of the graffiti online.

related: Swiss man admits vandalism, faces caning in Singapore

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SMRT Bishan depot breached, train vandalised
A northbound SMRT train which was found vandalised on Wednesday morning was pulled out of service

Transport operator SMRT released a statement saying that a train officer had discovered graffiti on the train. Initial investigations revealed a breach in the fence at Bishan Depot where the train was parked.

It added that the breach took place at a location where upgrading works to the security measures were being scheduled, reported The Straits Times.

"We are very concerned that despite stepped-up patrolling of the perimeter of our depots, this incident took place," it said in the statement.

Singapore sentences Swiss to caning for graffiti

Singapore sentenced a Swiss man to three strokes of a cane and five months in prison Friday for spray-painting graffiti on a subway car, reinforcing the city-state's reputation for severely punishing minor crimes. Oliver Fricker, 32, pleaded guilty earlier in the day to one count each of vandalism and trespassing for breaking into a train depot with an accomplice and drawing graffiti on two subway carriages on May 16. Fricker's lawyer, Derek Kang, said his client would appeal the punishment. "He feels the sentence is too high, and so do I," Kang told reporters. Fricker, who had been free on bail of 100,000 Singapore dollars ($72,000), was immediately taken into custody by court police.

The information technology consultant didn't speak to the media. He was silent and motionless throughout the hearing, but sighed heavily as he was led away. "The offenses were planned and carefully executed," said Senior District Judge See Kee Oon. "These were not impulsive displays of youthful bravado." Vandalism in Singapore carries a mandatory three to eight strokes of a cane and a fine of up to SG$2,000 Singapore dollars ($1,437) or up to three years in jail.

Singapore caning punishment is no joke. Michael Fay, an American teen was knocked out after receiving his first of 4 caning punishments. Singapore is a beautiful place. I've been there many times. Western kids ought to have their butt whipped if they know nothing about personal responsibility, accountability and discipline. We need caning here. I'm tired of seeing our cities tagged.

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Singapore train vandal arrested on return to Switzerland

A Swiss man who was jailed and caned for spray-painting a Singapore metro train has been arrested on his return to Switzerland for suspected graffiti offenses, authorities said Wednesday.

Oliver Fricker, a 32-year-old software consultant, is suspected of having spray-painted trains across five Swiss cantons, causing damage totalling some 200,000 francs (around S$264,000), prosecutors office in canton Zug said.

"He has been arrested yesterday morning at Zurich airport," Marcel Schlatter, spokesman for Zug's prosecution service, told AFP.

Singapore to cane Swiss man for graffiti terrorism

A Swiss man was sentenced to five months in jail and three strokes of a wooden cane after pleading guilty on Friday to vandalism and trespass for spray-painting a Singapore metro train.
Singapore authorities want to extradite Lloyd Dane Alexander for allegedly spray-painting a subway carriage

Oliver Fricker, 32, crimes alarmed Singapore officials because he and a British friend were able to break into a subway system believed to be a potential terrorist target. Singapore has launched an international hunt for the 29-year-old Briton, Lloyd Dane Alexander, who allegedly planned the act but left the city-state before he could be caught, leaving Fricker to face the consequences alone.

Prosecutors said the pair spray-painted the words "McKoy" and "Banos"on two carriages in the early hours of May 17 - the signature of train vandals whose elaborate works are celebrated in YouTube videos and websites.

Swiss train vandal released from Singapore prison: embassy
Swiss Vandal's Jail Term for Spray Painting Train in Singapore Is Extended
Swiss train vandal gets two more months

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Singapore authorities want to extradite Lloyd Dane Alexander for allegedly spray-painting a subway carriage

A court has issued an arrest warrant for Lloyd Dane Alexander for allegedly breaking into a train depot and vandalising a subway carriage on 16 May with Oliver Fricker, a Swiss national, the Singapore police force said today.

Singapore has a reputation for meting out severe punishments for relatively minor crimes. Vandalism carries a maximum fine of SG$2,000 (£980) or up to three years in jail, in addition to three to eight strokes of a wooden cane.

Police said Alexander has fled Singapore and authorities will seek to extradite him, depending on the extradition treaty Singapore has with the country where he is eventually located. Officers did not give details of Alexander's age, profession or possible whereabouts.

Singapore graffiti Briton sought
Singapore Issues International Arrest Warrant for Graffiti Artist

Vandalism cases in Singapore
SMRT train Vandalised Again
Profanities On Rooftop Of A Toa Payoh HDB
Vandalism and the Act of Rebellion