British man, 52, & S'porean wife, 39, jailed for meeting in hotel room when he was serving SHN

They were sentenced today (Feb. 26).

Syahindah Ishak | February 26, 2021, 03:01 PM

Skea Nigel, a 52-year-old British national, and his Singaporean wife, Agatha Maghesh Eyamalai, 39, have been sentenced to jail on Friday (Feb. 26).

Skea had breached his Stay-Home Notice (SHN) in September 2020. Agatha, on the other hand, had abetted Skea's breaches.

According to CNA, Skea was sentenced to two weeks' jail and fined S$1,000, while Agatha was given one week's jail.

Came to Singapore to get married

The prosecution had initially sought four weeks' jail and a S$1,000 fine for Skea, as well as two weeks' jail for Agatha.

According to CNA, the couple's defence lawyer said in mitigation that this was "a classic case of two lovers wanting to be together".

Skea had come to Singapore to marry Agatha, his then fiancee. They got married on Nov. 14, 2020.

District Judge Jasvender Kaur had said, according to CNA:

"The fact of the matter is that the restrictions are necessary to prevent the spread of the pandemic.

Disruptions to relationships are an inevitable consequence. It requires patience and sacrifice (from) everyone... for the greater good."

Had pleaded guilty

Skea and Agatha had previously pleaded guilty in court.

Skea had breached his SHN by leaving his hotel room on three occasions on Sep. 21, 2020

On the third and final occasion, he was with Agatha, who was not under SHN, but had booked a different room in the same hotel.

He did not wear a mask when leaving his hotel room.

Skea's room was on the 14th floor while Agatha's was on the 27th.

He had climbed 13 floors to meet her.

Skea was charged under the Infectious Diseases (Covid-19 – Stay Orders) Regulations 2020 and the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Act 2020.

Agatha was charged with abetting Skea's breaches.

How the breaches were discovered

The couple were in contact prior to Skea's arrival in Singapore, and had agreed to meet when Skea checked in.

Prior to her arrival, Skea left his room to scout out the premises at around 12:52am.

He realised, however, that access was one-way and could not get back into his room.

Stuck on the 14th floor, he called for help, and was let back into his room by hotel staff.

Agatha checked in to the hotel on 2:25am and was given a room on the 27th floor.

Skea used a piece of cardboard as a makeshift doorstopper to ensure he would be able to get back to his room.

However, after visiting Agatha, Skea found that he was unable to access his room via the emergency staircase, and continued down the stairs to the fourth floor, where he was stopped by hotel staff.

Skea told the hotel staff that his room door had accidentally closed behind him when he stepped out to collect food, and he repeated the lie to a hotel manager who escorted him back to his room.

However, upon arriving at Skea's room, the manager realised that the door was unlocked and ajar, and realised the lie.

Skea's actions were also captured on camera.

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Top images by Nigel Chua & Syahindah Ishak.