3.5 years’ jail for elderly man who slashed son with chopper

Weng Kim Song was jailed for three and a half years today for slashing his son with a chopper. — TODAY pic
Weng Kim Song was jailed for three and a half years today for slashing his son with a chopper. — TODAY pic

SINGAPORE, July 3 — Flying into a rage over his 33-year-old son’s rude behaviour, Weng Kim Song slashed him with a chopper and almost killed him.

The 74-year-old was sentenced to three and a half years’ jail today for voluntarily causing grievous hurt.

The court heard that Weng had committed the offence at the family’s sixth floor flat at Commonwealth Close on March 25 this year.

Court documents also stated that the duo had an acrimonious relationship, and they often quarrelled over Mr Yuan’s use of illicit drugs, as well as his aggressive and rude behaviour towards his parents.

At about 8.30pm that day, Weng stormed into the room of his son, Mr Benson Yuan Pei Sheng, while he and his girlfriend were asleep.

The elderly man, who had tucked a chopper with a 22cm blade into the back of his pants, demanded that he apologise for his rudeness in a phone conversation earlier in the day. Mr Yuan had hurled profanities at him during the phone call.

Woken from his sleep, Mr Yuan demanded to know why Weng had barged into his room. He also spoke in a rude manner, and both men started to argue loudly.

Weng then reached for the chopper, which he had intended to use if his son did not apologise, and started slashing his son multiple times on his head, back, arms, and legs.

The attack left Mr Yuan with gaping and deep wounds, and he also suffered fractures to his forearm and frontal bone of his head.

Mr Yuan’s girlfriend, Ms Calinda Yeo Hui Ping, 27, tried to stop Weng by throwing a bolster at him, but he slashed her upper limbs with the chopper.

Weng’s wife, Madam Ho Bee Choo, 70, was sleeping at the time, but she was woken up by the screams coming from her son’s room. She took the chopper away from Weng, pushed him out of the room, and then threw the chopper out of a window.

When Weng went to the ground floor to retrieve the chopper, he alarmed a passer-by, Mr Goh Jee Shiou, who had heard the commotion coming from one of the flats. Mr Goh asked another passer-by, who was not named in court documents, to call the police, and told him the “man took (a) chopper up to the lift”.

When the police arrived, Weng was seated in the living room, and he surrendered himself to them. He was placed under arrest, and the victims were sent to the National University Hospital for treatment.

Seeking a jail term of three years or less for his client today, defence lawyer Christopher Sim conveyed a message from Weng’s nephew that Mr Yuan had wanted to attend his court hearing to give him moral support as he had forgiven his father for his actions.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Houston Johannus sought a four-year jail term, citing Weng’s lack of remorse as indicated in an Institute of Mental Health report. The report stated that Weng was only remorseful for not being able to care for his wife.

DPP Johannus said that Mr Yuan was “not an angel”, and “not a good son”, but that did not justify Weng’s cruel acts on him.

In sentencing Weng, District Judge (DJ) Kessler Soh called it a “difficult case”. He said he had taken the criminal’s age into consideration, as well as “how difficult it has been for (him) with (his) son”.

However, “none of us knew what went through your mind when you did that to your son,” said DJ Soh.

For voluntarily causing grievous hurt, Weng could have been jailed for up to 15 years, fined and caned. — TODAY

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