Escape for drug trafficker: Missed death by just 0.11 g

Escape for drug trafficker: Missed death by just 0.11 g

A drug trafficker missed the hangman’s noose by a mere 0.11 g – about the weight of a fifth of a Panadol tablet – and was sentenced yesterday to 20 years and six months’ jail, and 20 strokes of the cane.

Allan Chua Chuan Heng, 26, escape the death penalty, but his mother, who had high blood pressure, suffered a heart attack and died, his lawyer said.

A first offender and unemployed, Chua was arrested on Jan 13 this year when narcotics officers found packets of heroin in his rented apartment in Marine Parade.

The drug, which is also known as diamorphine, had been stored inside ice-cream containers, biscuit tins, drawers and envelopes.

A scientific analysis showed that the amount of heroin was 14.89 g, just short of the amount that would have put a noose around Chua’s neck.

He would have got the death penalty if he had been caught with more than 15 g of heroin for purposes of trafficking.

An hour before his apartment was raided, 19 sachets of drugs were found in a cabinet near his son’s bed in the Singapore General Hospital. The four-year-old-boy was in hospital to have a harelip operated on.

The haul from the hospital room came to 4.39 g of heroin.

Chua and his wife, Peh Siew Yin, 23, were found in possession of the drugs. Peh was jailed for three years in all for drug possession and consumption, and for allowing her husband to smoke heroin in their apartment.

Yesterday, in mitigation, Chua’s lawyer, Mr. Singa Retnam, said his client came from a broken home and lacked guidance and supervision in his formative years.

The lawyer said that his client’s mother became depressed, fearing he would be sentenced to death. When she died from a heart attack, Chua blamed himself for her death and was remorseful.