Photo from Straits Times and Linkedin

In yet another landmark case proving that foreigners and rich have their way in Singapore, the Singapore Court yesterday (Dec 20) awarded a S$57 compensation to a Singaporean teacher who was viciously attacked by a New Zealand company director.

At around 8am on 12 Aug 2014, Singapore Permanent Resident, Stefan Paul Afendoulis, grabbed 43-year-old teacher Toh Peng Hwee by the neck, pinned him against the wall and repeatedly smashed the victim’s head against the wall. The victim suffered breathing difficulties for the blazoned public display of aggression by the company director of a banking technology firm.

The fight happened because the two bumped into each other at the Macdonald outlet in Safra Yishun. According to court hearings, the aggressor only stopped after his wife shouted at him to stop. It is understood that Stefan’s two young children were present at the scene.

You may view Stefan Afendoulis’s Linkedin profile here.

In his defence, Stefan Afendoulis’s lawyer claimed that the foreigner attacked the teacher because he believed the latter was about to assault him. However, Stefan Afendoulis pleaded guilty last month to amended charges that omitted the head knocking attack to one that was only grabbing the victim by the neck and pinning him against the wall.

Singapore District Judge Luke Tan let the rich New Zealander off without a jail sentence for the attack. To add salt to the victim’s plight, District Judge Luke Tan fined the company director S$2,500 – a fraction of the director’s salary – and awarded only S$57 for the victim’s suffering. The prosecution, Deputy Public Prosecutor Michael Quilindo, did not contest the judgment.

This case sparks widespread speculation to the popular belief that the Singapore Court defends the rich and foreign and severely punishes the poor and local.