Man, 19, who backflipped in S'pore zoo enclosure & tortured frog, slapped with reformative training

He was found unsuitable for probation.

Nigel Chua | December 20, 2021, 07:03 PM

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Ralph Wee Yi Kai, 19, who pleaded guilty in November 2021 to several offences including trespassing into a rhino enclosure, causing a frog unnecessary suffering, possessing imitation tobacco products, and drug consumption, has been sentenced to a year of reformative training, CNA reported.

Wee had previously been ordered to go through assessments for a probation suitability report and a reformative training report after pleading guilty to his various offences.

Offenders who undergo probation will not have a criminal record, while reformative training, which provides a more structured environment, results in a criminal record.

The prosecution had objected to having Wee assessed for probation, saying that he had a tendency to abuse drugs and alcohol, was beyond the control of his parents, and even posed a risk to them. Thus, the prosecution said, probation would be "unsuitable".

The court on Dec. 20 heard that Wee was found to be suitable for reformative training, but not probation, reported CNA.

Besides his sentence of reformative training, Wee has been in remand since getting arrested shortly after he overslept and missed a Nov. 5 court hearing, leaving his lawyer to explain that Wee's parents were not able to wake their son up, and urge the judge to issue an arrest warrant so that Wee could be taken into custody.

Wee's defence lawyer Shashi Nathan called attention to the fact that Wee had already been remanded for some time, an experience that gave him "maturity and understanding" that he did not have previously.

Nathan said his client wanted a new start, and that he was "sorry for everything that's happened".

According to CNA, the judge told Wee to show that he can "do better" while in reformative training.

Timeline of events with updated details

Oct. 9, 2020, 2:40am: Allegedly committed an act of vandalism by hitting an information panel at a bus stop in Sixth Avenue, off Bukit Timah Road, causing S$900 in damage.

Allegedly caused damage to two cars -- S$2,800 to a Mercedes-Benz and more than S$1,600 to a BMW -- in nearby Sixth Crescent.

A taxi driver passing by reported him to the police, as Wee was standing in the middle of the road with a beer bottle in hand.

Dec. 16, 2020: Wee was placed on compulsory supervision for 60 months from Dec. 16. He was required to present himself for urine tests on each Tuesday and Thursday, but failed to turn up on four occasions.

He was placed on e-tagging during this period of time, after having been charged for his earlier offences.

He had to stay at home from 10pm to 6am as part of his bail conditions.

Dec. 17, 2020, 2.40pm: Accused of trespassing into the rhinoceros enclosure and taking a video.

Dec. 18, 2020: Reposted zoo video, despite taking it down earlier after being told to do so by the police. Told to remove video again.

Dec. 24, 2020: Accused of abusing a frog, which subsequently died, by hitting a ball against it on a foosball table, causing "unnecessary pain and suffering".

The incident allegedly took place at a Sentosa Cove property.

Wee then cut up the dead frog and threw it into a nearby canal.

July 2021: First hauled to court and charged with two counts of mischief, as well as one count each of vandalism and criminal trespass.

Bail was then set at S$15,000.

Aug. 6, 2021: Allegedly consumed cannabis while out on bail. Arrested at his residence and two urine samples obtained tested positive for weed. S$15,000 bail revoked.

Sep. 14, 2021: Allegedly possessed an e-vaporiser and six e-cigarette pods at a ward in the Institute of Mental Health.

Three police officers showed up at IMH, where Wee was warded, to arrest him for failing to attend court.

He was admitted to IMH due to his drug and alcohol abuse, as had acted aggressively towards his parents when they demanded the drugs from him.

He was warded in IMH due to the risk he posed to his parents.

Oct. 13, 2021: Charged with one count of drug consumption while still in remand.

Bail raised to S$20,000 and Wee was released.

While out on second bail, Wee committed a string of offences, including cutting his electronic tag, according to ST, as well as not reporting for his urine tests on a few occasions, CNA reported.

The prosecution has called for an urgent bail review hearing to have Wee's second bail revoked for the alleged fresh offences.

Oct. 26, 2021: Allegedly cut a S$100 GPS ankle tag at an address on Leedon Road at about 12:10am.

Prior to this act, Wee was upset at his father, who had asked Wee to sleep early since he had to report for his urine test in the morning.

After arguing with his father, Wee decided to leave the house, and used pliers to cut off his e-tag before cycling to his friend’s house.

Upon discovering that Wee was missing, his father called the police.

The e-tag, worth S$100, was damaged and could no longer be used.

It was found in Wee’s house.

Oct. 28, 2021: Allegedly possessed an e-cigarette pod at the Leedon Road address.

Nov. 5, 2021: Warrant of arrest issued, as Wee could not wake up to attend court.

Nov. 6, 2021: Wee arrested.

Nov. 12, 2021: Slapped with four additional charges.

Nov. 25, 2021: Pleaded guilty to consuming weed, causing unnecessary suffering to a frog, possessing imitation tobacco products, trespassing into a rhino enclosure, and committing mischief by damaging property belonging to others.

Ordered to go though assessments for a probation suitability report and a reformative training report.

Top image via Ralph Wee on TikTok

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