Four Britons punished after breaking lock for drinking in Singapore


Four Britons have been banned from working in Singapore and face heavy fines after breaking the lock to go on a bar tour.

Neil Gordon Buchan, 30, Perry Scott Blair, 37, James Titus Beatt, 33, and Joseph William Poynter, 35, pleaded guilty in court Friday for breaking the rules on May 16.

An American couple – Jeffrey George Brown, 52, and Bao Nguyen Brown, 40 – and Austrian Michael Czerny, 45, were also punished.

Four Britons were banned from working in Singapore and fined £ 5,000 each after this image of people drinking in public in violation of the lockout went viral. The four drank on this square the day this photo was taken, although it is not clear if they are shown here

It comes after a photo of people drinking outside in Robertson Quay, a neighborhood known for its bars, went viral on social media the same day – causing outrage.

It is not clear if any of these fines were shown in the image.

The court learned that the British men had coincidentally met on the day in question at a place called Bar Bar Black Sheep, which was closed but sold take-out liquor at Robertson Quay.

The quartet bought drinks, then went to another nearby area, where they bought more drinks at a place called Boomarang.

Their final destination was an Italian restaurant called Rosso Vino, where they bought their last tour, reports the Straits Times.

The men then stayed on the road drinking and smoking for about 25 minutes before returning home, prosecutors said.

On the same day, Brown and his wife also went to Robertson Quay and bought alcohol before sitting at a table to drink.

Czerny happened to be passing by while walking his dog and agreed to join the couple after they offered him a drink.

The trio spoke for about half an hour before Czerny’s departure.

Singapore, first praised for mastering the coronavirus without having to be locked out, was forced to take tough action on April 7 as cases escalated following outbreaks among workers migrants.

Nicknamed “the circuit breaker,” people were told not to go outside, except for the most part, and they were warned to stay within three feet of each other and to wear masks.

Singapore, originally praised for locking-out coronavirus, was forced to take tough action on April 7 after an explosion in city-state cases (file image)

Singapore, originally praised for locking-out coronavirus, was forced to take tough action on April 7 after an explosion in city-state cases (file image)

Pictures of people gathered at Robertson Quay on May 16 sparked outrage because people ignored social distance and weren’t wearing masks.

Prosecutors had asked that the British be jailed for a week to set an example after exploring the bar – a description their lawyers vehemently rejected.

Finally, the court settled the fines and work bans.

Robertson Quay bars have also been ordered to stop selling alcohol because it encourages people to congregate.

Two other Britons – Alfred Jon Veloso Waring, 34, and Olagunju Daniel Olalekan Olasunkanmi, 30 – were also charged with drinking in the same area on the same day, but their cases are pending.

They are to be returned to court on July 7.

In total, Singapore has revoked the work passes of 140 people for breaking the lock rules, the Ministry of Manpower announced.

Of these, 98 were punished for eating, drinking or gathering outside in a group. The other 42 were caught violating residence orders or quarantine orders.

Singapore has 42,763 confirmed virus cases – the highest total in Southeast Asia – and has recorded 21 deaths from the virus.


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