Singapore — A FoodPanda delivery man was sentenced to six strokes of the cane and two and half years of jail time on August 14 for slashing and hitting his colleague, Batman Suparman earlier this year.
Forty-year-old Eng Guan Hong and Batman Suparman, age 29, had been fellow delivery riders for FoodPanda, covering the same areas for deliveries. An argument over a WhatsApp group chat turned into a real-life altercation wherein Mr Eng slashed Mr Batman’s face repeatedly with a knife, as well as bashed his head in with a motorcycle helmet.
Mr Batman became known on the internet for his unusual name some years ago.
The fight started when Mr Eng sent a message on January 28 to their group chat, telling about a new scheme for FoodPanda riders, one he claimed that if riders did not join, they were ‘bodoh,’ which is a Malay word for stupid.
Mr Batman apparently took offense at the word and asked Mr Eng to stop using it.
This escalated into a full-blown angry exchange. According to Deputy Public Prosecutor Dillon Kok, Mr Eng ended up challenging Mr Batman to meet up so they could settle their differences.
When the two met at the Food Panda office at United House, Mr Eng was armed with a penknife that had a 10.5 cm-long blade, and also carried a motorcycle helmet, which he used to hit Mr Batman.
Other FoodPanda drivers tried to stop Mr Eng, but to no avail.
When Mr Batman had fallen in an attempt to get away from his angry colleague, he tripped and fell to the ground. Mr Eng then pounced on him and slashed Mr Batman’s face many times with the penknife.
He sustained cuts near his nose and ear.
Their fellow FoodPanda delivery riders managed to stop Mr Eng after a while, but he was still able to punch Mr Batman in the face.
The assault only ended when some people from the FoodPanda office came out and intervened, separating the two men.
Mr Batman filed a police report against his colleague and then went to get treatment at Singapore General Hospital for the lacerations near his nose, on other parts of his face, and in his hand. A medical report states that doctors believe he will have scars from the lacerations on his face.
On August 14 Mr Eng pleaded guilty to one charge of voluntarily causing hurt with a dangerous weapon, with a second charge of causing hurt with the helmet also taken into consideration.
Mr Eng has several prior convictions for theft, as well as a similar one for voluntarily causing hurt by a dangerous weapon in 2004. He was sent to prison for two years and received six strokes of the cane.
His lawyer, T M Sinnadurai said that while the helmet was a light one and that Mr Batman was only on medical leave for 4 days, “Nevertheless it is indeed a serious offence where a knife was used and the accused is not making any excuses for his actions. He is telling this court that he will change to a new leaf and stay away from committing further offences of any nature.”
Mr Eng could have been imprisoned for a maximum of 7 years, fined, or caned or a combination of all three penalties for voluntarily causing hurt by a dangerous weapon.
Mr Batman is also a former convict, having been jailed for theft, housebreaking and taking heroin. -/TISG