Man who started fire outside flat occupied by ex-girlfriend’s fiance jailed six months


SINGAPORE - Filled with anger and jealousy when he found out that his former girlfriend was getting married, a man started a fire outside the Housing Board flat where the fiance lived.

On Friday, Surenthiran Sugumaran, 30, (pic) was sentenced to six months’ jail.

He was convicted in October after he pleaded guilty to one charge of committing mischief by fire, knowing that he was likely to cause damage to property.

On March 11, he found out through an Instagram post that his former girlfriend was getting married to Mohammad Azli Mohammad Salleh the following day.

Surenthiran decided to lock the front gate of the man’s flat and start a fire to cause inconvenience to Azli before his wedding ceremony.

At or around 3.35am on March 12, Surenthiran left home with an empty 1.5 litre bottle, a bicycle lock and a lighter. He filled the bottle with petrol from his motorcycle.

Clad in a black hoodie which he later used to cover his face to avoid closed-circuit television (CCTV) detection, he arrived at the victim’s block, taking a lift to the 12th storey and the stairs to the 13th storey.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Bharat S. Punjabi said in October that Surenthiran took this route to further evade CCTV scrutiny.

After starting the fire, Surenthiran walked down to the 12th storey and took the lift to the ground floor. He threw the lighter into some bushes before returning home.

When Azli opened his unit door at 8.22am and found his front gate locked and several shoes burnt, he called the police.

The fire damaged property, including two pairs of Nike shoes, with an estimated value of $410.

Court documents do not say how Surenthiran was caught.

DPP Bharat added: “While the damage caused was not extensive, there was clear endangerment to lives as the fire was right outside the victim’s unit and within a residential block. The use of an accelerant in the form of petrol also aggravates the potential harm that could have been caused.”

On Friday, District Judge Eugene Teo said in sentencing that “such offences are very dangerous for the occupants in the flat”.

“I have to take into account the circumstances in which you planned out these offences, including the fact that you also locked up the premises and the purpose for which you committed these series of acts.”

Those who commit mischief by fire intending to cause or knowing it will likely cause damage to property can be jailed for up to seven years and fined.

Article type: free
User access status:
Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

Singapore , court , fire , flat , fiance , Surenthiran , ex-girlfriend

   

Next In Aseanplus News

King and Queen express condolences over Turkiye quake
China sacks weather bureau chief in shake-up after balloon furore
Pakatan needs to consult Umno if OK to accept sacked members
Li Bingbing says eating vegetables blanched in hot water 3 times a day helps maintain her figure
Asean News Headlines at 9pm on Monday (Feb 6, 2023)
Turkiye quake tremors felt as far away as Greenland
Singapore Inland Revenue warns of new variant of phishing scam offering tax refunds
Those with clean hands need not fear MACC probe, says PM
Indonesia’s fastest GDP expansion in nine years faces new risks
No point in counting Covid-19 cases anymore as virus is here to stay, says top Thai virologist

Others Also Read