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Woman files police report against TADA driver who allegedly held her laptop ransom for $100 after she left it in his car

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TADA told her to make a police report after the driver allegedly wanted money for "safeguarding" her computer

SINGAPORE: After inadvertently leaving her laptop in a car she booked through a ride-hailing service, a woman said that the driver asked for a large amount of money for its return.

The woman, who asked to be identified simply as Ms Bella, wrote a post detailing her experience on the COMPLAINT SINGAPORE page on May 23 (Tuesday), warning netizens to “Pls be cautious.”

Ms Bella wrote that when she left her laptop on the TADA ride, she reached out to the driver, a Mr Abdul Hamid A Razik.

“To my shock, he asked me for money. He asked me how much I’m willing to pay him for helping me to ‘Safeguard’ my laptop & for his ‘Time.’ I said I’m willing to come over to his place of convenience & pay him $10.”

However, the driver complained that this amount was “so little”.

He then gave her his cellphone number so she could contact him when he thought of how much she should pay him.

“That’s blackmailing & holding my laptop ransom!” Ms Bella wrote, adding, “He knows I need my laptop for teaching tomorrow morning & said if I don’t pay him he will only drop my laptop to the police post when ‘he is free.’”

She added that the driver even opened her laptop bag and specifically told her what was inside.

When she reached out to the company, she was told to make a police report.

“I call his Handphone twice, only have him telling me ‘You give me money $100, then you will have your laptop back. Your laptop is expensive, you should pay me money for safekeeping your laptop.’

“He never even wanna share with me his whereabouts so I can travel over to him collect my laptop.”

On her final call to him, the driver changed the amount he was charging her to $50 “for safeguarding laptop fee”.

If she refused, he said he would take “‘his own sweet time’ to drop my laptop to a police station with no guarantee everything inside my laptop is safe.”

Ms Bella added in an update to her post that she filed a police report against the driver “for attempting to extort money from me by holding my laptop ransom”.

The Independent Singapore has reached out to Ms Bella as well as to TADA.

Ms Bella reached out to us to to say that she even called the driver “Abang”, which means brother in Malay, and talked to him about “integrity and karma but he laughed it off as if integrity is worthless and useless”.

She added that it was only when she lodged a police report at Pasir Ris and the police sergeant spoke to the driver that he decided to bring the laptop to the station.

The driver’s “only agenda is to extort money from me knowing I need my laptop by tomorrow morning. If not, it would be at least 3 working days if the lost & found item gotta be sent to Police HQ,” she told us.

Ms Bella also expressed disappointment with TADA. She felt TADA could have done much more to help her than merely telling her to file a police report. /TISG

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