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Two Men To Be Charged For Two Separate Incidents Of Making A False Bomb Threat And Communicating False Information Of Harmful Thing

The Police have arrested a 30-year-old man for his alleged involvement in a case of making a false bomb threat on 12 October 2023, and another 39-year-old man for his alleged involvement in a case of communicating false information of harmful thing on 13 October 2023. Both men will be charged in court on 14 October 2023.

Case of making a false bomb threat

On 12 October 2023, at about 4.55pm, the Police were alerted to a case of an alleged bomb threat on board flight TR16 from Singapore to Perth. Preliminary investigations revealed that during the flight, the man had allegedly informed cabin crew members repeatedly that he was in possession of a bomb. By this time, the plane had departed Singapore. As a result of the threat, the plane had to turn back to Singapore, under the escort of Republic of Singapore Air Force fighter aircrafts. The plane landed safely in Changi Airport at about 6.26pm. For the safety of all passengers and crew, officers from Airport Police Division and Special Operations Command’s K-9 Unit, were mobilised to investigate the bomb threat.

As a result of the additional security measures implemented to ensure the safety of all persons on board flight TR16, there was a delay of more than five hours before the nine crew members and 362 passengers disembarked in Singapore at around 9.19pm. The flight subsequently departed Singapore to Perth at 11.41pm. 

The Police arrested a 30-year-old Australian male passenger for his alleged involvement in the incident. The bomb threat was found to be false. He will be charged on 14 October 2023 with the offence of making false threats of terrorist acts under Regulation 8(1) of the United Nations (Anti-Terrorism Measures) Regulations 2001, read with Section 3(1) of the Tokyo Convention Act 1971.

Under the Tokyo Convention Act 1971, if a crime takes place on a Singapore-controlled aircraft flying outside of the country, the offender can be charged with the offence under Singapore laws. 

Under the United Nations Act 2001, those found guilty of an offence under Regulation 8(1) of the United Nations (Anti-Terrorism Measures) Regulations 2001 may be liable to an imprisonment term of up to 10 years, a fine up to $500,000, or both.

Case of communicating false information of harmful thing

In a separate incident, on 13 October 2023 at 4.03pm, the Police were alerted by a cruise operator to an alleged bomb threat onboard a cruise ship berthed at Marina Bay Cruise Centre. In response to the threat, the Police, together with the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) and security officers from Marina Bay Cruise Centre conducted extensive security checks on the cruise ship. No threat items were found onboard the cruise ship.

Through follow-up investigations, officers from Central Police Division swiftly established the identity of the suspect and arrested a 39-year-old man within three hours of the reported bomb threat. The man will be charged on 14 October 2023 for an offence of communicating false information of a harmful thing under Section 268A of the Penal Code 1871. The offence carries an imprisonment term of up to seven years, a fine which may extend to $50,000, or both. 

As a result of the additional security checks on the cruise ship, operations were halted, causing a two-hour delay to the boarding process. An estimated 4,000 passengers were affected. 

The Police treat all security threats seriously and will not hesitate to take action against anyone who causes public alarm with false threats. Beyond the fear and inconvenience caused to other members of the public, the making of false threats comes at a cost of public resources that have to be deployed to deal with the incident.

 


PUBLIC AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT
SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE
14 October 2023 @ 8:35 AM
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