BMW driver jailed 6 weeks for assault after pushing security officer who shouted at him, hit his car

Shaffiq Alkhatib
The Straits Times
Aug 28, 2023

A man who was driving a BMW X5 outside United Square shopping mall got out of the sport utility vehicle (SUV) and pushed a senior security officer who had raised his voice at him.

The victim, Mr Prakash Govindan Damodaran, 56, fell to the ground and fractured his left wrist.

His assailant, Chinese national Wang Lin, 42, a director at more than 100 firms including Accendo Capital Holdings and YP Investments, was sentenced to six weeks’ jail on Monday after he pleaded guilty to an assault charge.

Defence lawyer S.S. Dhillon told the court his client had gone to the shopping mall at around 11.45am on Nov 6, 2021, to pick up his wife and daughter after the child’s enrichment class.

The lawyer from Dhillon & Panoo law firm added that as it was raining at the time, Wang, a Singapore permanent resident, drove to the lane closest to the building so his family would not be drenched.

Mr Prakash, who was standing on a chevron marking on the road, immediately gestured at Wang to stop.

He told Wang in a raised voice that he was not permitted to enter the lane, which is reserved for taxis.

He suggested that Wang use the mall’s carpark, which has a 30-minute free parking grace period, to pick up his passengers.

On Monday, Mr Dhillon told the court: “We are instructed by Wang Lin that he was taken aback when the victim shouted and gestured at him. At one point, the victim even hit the front of Wang Lin’s vehicle.

“The force was such that Wang Lin could feel the vibration of the impact from the inside of his car.”

Unhappy, Wang swerved past Mr Prakash into an adjacent lane and got out of his SUV to confront the security officer.

He shoved the victim on the chest with both hands, causing the older man to fall on his back. While Mr Prakash was on the ground, Wang looked down and chided him.

Wang’s wife, who was nearby, pulled him away. The family then left in the SUV.

The prosecution said the vehicle was not damaged.

When Mr Prakash went to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, he was found to have fractured his left wrist.

On Feb 16, 2022, the Union of Security Employees posted details of the incident on its Facebook page to highlight the physical and verbal abuse security guards endure at work.

Wang was arrested two days later and charged in court in April 2022.

On Monday, Mr Dhillon said his client had suffered tremendous trauma and agony following the incident, adding: “The negative publicity perpetrated in the social media has completely paralysed Wang Lin as he has been demonised as a rich and powerful brat.

“He has unduly suffered in the court of public opinion and his character has been defiled.”

The lawyer told the court that Wang had been diagnosed with depression with suicidal ideation, and also had psychotic symptoms that meet the criteria for schizophrenia.



Mental well-being

  • Institute of Mental Health’s Mental Health Helpline: 6389-2222 (24 hours)
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