Disgruntled man falsely implicated police officers in $8,000 theft

·Senior Reporter
·3-min read
Man being interviewed by investigation officer
Man being interviewed by investigation officer. (PHOTO: Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — Frustrated at having his sleep disturbed, a man lied that $8,000 had been stolen from him and implicated the two police officers who had supposedly woken him up.

Due to Vinesh Kumar Ganesan’s lie, the police officers were searched and had their statements taken.

The 33-year-old Malaysian was jailed for four weeks and fined $6,800 on Friday (31 December) after he pleaded guilty to one count of providing false information to a public servant, and one count each of drink driving, driving without a licence, and using a vehicle without insurance coverage.

Another four charges of a similar nature were considered for his sentencing.

The traffic offences related to an earlier incident in which a drunk Vinesh had stolen his friend’s motorcycle to drive to a restaurant and cause a ruckus. He was disqualified from driving for three years over the traffic offences.

Woken up by police at 3.30am

On 12 December this year, Vinesh lodged a police report stating that $8,000 of his cash - in the form of a stack of $50 notes - was missing. He claimed that he kept the money, which was meant to pay off a fine for his traffic offences, in a zip compartment in a bag beside his bed.

He alleged that either his roommate or two police officers who had visited his home had “a role to play” in stealing his cash.

Vinesh claimed that he was woken up by the police officers' presence at around 3.30am on 12 December. The officers were responding to his roommate’s call for assistance over a case of assault.

After Vinesh woke up, he looked for his bag for his identification card but could not find the bag. One of the two police officers found the bag in another room and handed it to Vinesh. After searching the bag, Vinesh told the police officers that he had $8,000 missing. He gave a written statement to one of the officers, lying that it was probably his roommate who stole it.

Upon a follow-up by an investigation officer, Vinesh maintained his lie, spurring the police to expedite investigations into the two police officers. These involved the police conducting a raid and searching the two officers, recording their statements, and swabbing the bag’s zip for evidence.

Vinesh only came clean on 13 December and confessed that he never had the $8,000. He said that he had lied as he was drunk, tired, and frustrated at being woken up.

Drove friend's motorcycle after drinking beer, without licence

Separately on 11 August, Vinesh and a friend were around Arab Street, where his friend went for a massage, leaving his motorcycle and the ignition key with it. While waiting for his friend to be done, Vinesh drank two cans of beer and stole his friend’s motorcycle. He did not have a driving licence.

He drove to a restaurant at Bussorah Street intending to find a friend who worked there. Upon reaching, Vinesh was told by a restaurant employee that his friend was not working, and a dispute ensued.

The police were called, and the officer who interviewed Vinesh noted that he reeked of alcohol. A breath analyser device test was conducted on him, and revealed that he had 72 micrograms of alcohol in every 100 millilitres of breath, more than twice the legal limit of 35 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath.

Deputy Public Prosecutor R Arvindren sought at least two to four weeks’ jail, a fine of between $6,800 and $8,800, and a disqualification from driving for three years.

He noted that considerable investigative resources were wasted due to Vinesh’s lie. He also pointed out that for the traffic offences, Vinesh was intoxicated, had not worn a helmet, and had driven for his own personal gain.

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