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Man gets death for drug trafficking; brother gets life in prison

Man gets death for drug trafficking; brother gets life in prison

Source: Straits Times
Article Date: 18 Mar 2020
Author: Dominic Low

Two brothers who gave conflicting defences in the High Court on drug charges have been sentenced.

Two brothers who gave conflicting defences in the High Court on drug charges have been sentenced.

One will hang, and the other escaped the gallows, receiving life imprisonment instead. Both were sentenced on Feb 21.

Mohamed Mubin Abdul Rahman, 59, who got the death sentence, and Lokman Abdul Rahman, 55, were both convicted on Feb 6 of drug trafficking offences. Lokman was also found guilty of drug possession.

Court documents said Lokman was arrested by Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) officers on Sept 8, 2015, with two bundles containing a total of 39.28g of diamorphine, as well as other packets of drugs, on him. The street name of diamorphine is heroin.

The officers also searched his Katong Park Towers apartment, where they found more drugs.

Mubin was subsequently arrested on Oct 5 that year.

Court documents state that both brothers provided conflicting defences.

Lokman maintained throughout police investigations and in court that he worked for Mubin, including being a drug courier, in exchange for accommodation, drugs and money.

He said that Mubin had instructed him to deliver drugs from the Katong apartment to a flat in Holland Close on the day of his arrest.

When he arrived at the apartment later that day, Mubin instructed him, via a phone call, to deliver one of the two bundles of diamorphine in the apartment to a third party. He was arrested after he left the apartment with both bundles.

In contrast, Mubin told the court that he did not give any instructions to Lokman, and had no knowledge of the drugs found on his brother or in the Katong apartment. He claimed that he was simply a moderate consumer of methamphetamine, another drug.

He alleged that Lokman gave false evidence to implicate him, as his brother wanted to get back at him because of a rivalry for the affections of his former wife Hasina Begum Glum Hussin Mullah.

He further claimed that Lokman also did so as he wanted to get a Certificate of Substantive Assistance (CSA) from the prosecution. The certificate, which states that its recipient has substantively helped the CNB in disrupting drug-trafficking activities within or outside Singapore, would give Lokman a chance to avoid the death penalty.

In her written grounds of decision dated March 10, Justice Valerie Thean said that she found Lokman's testimony largely consistent with several pieces of evidence and testimonies of independent witnesses, including Mubin's drug suppliers who were convicted last year.

On the other hand, Mubin's testimony in court contradicted those of his drug suppliers, among other things, Justice Thean said.

She noted that his allegations about the sibling rivalry over his former wife were disputed by Ms Hasina herself. Ms Hasina had told the court that there were neither plans for the former spouses to reconcile, nor was Lokman vying for her affection.

Justice Thean stated that in sentencing both men last month, she noted that Lokman acted as a courier for Mubin.

The prosecution had also issued a CSA to Lokman.

She then exercised her discretion to sentence Lokman to life imprisonment, she said.

The judge also said that, in contrast, Mubin was neither merely a courier, nor was he granted a CSA by the prosecution.

"I therefore pronounced the mandatory sentence of death on Mubin," Justice Thean said.

Source: Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Permission required for reproduction.

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