Amos Yee, a 17-year-old Singaporean blogger who caught media attention last year for his radical social media posts, has been slapped with eight new charges.
According to Free Malaysia Today, Yee faces five charges for allegedly hurting the religious feelings of Muslims and one charge for allegedly wounding the religious feelings of Christians. If found guilty, he could be sentenced to up to three years imprisonment and fines. The other two charges are for failing to appear twice at the Jurong Poice Division after having been ordered by the police and the court to do so, an offense that could result to up to one month of jailtime plus a fine of up to $1,500.
The authorities came to notice Yee in March last year when he uploaded a video that criticized Lee Kuan Yew, former prime minister of Singapore, shortly after his death. He reportedly compared the leader to Jesus but described both negatively. He later posted an obsene image depicting Lee and former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher. He was arrested and the court found him guilty of obsenity and intention to hurt Christians' religious feelings. He was released on bail but continued to breach bail conditions.
He was asked by the police to report for investigations at the Jurong Police Division in December, but he didn't show up. He then left Singapore and stayed in another country for several months. Upon his return in April, he was a served an order by the magistrate to report at the police station, but he again failed to show up.
Yee was taken into custody on May 11 but was released on a S$5,000 bail. He was in court on May 26 without legal counsel and, according to The Straits Times, told District Judge Ronald Gwee that has intentions to claim trial for all the charges. There will be a pre-trial conference on May 30.
Oh my gosh. No lawyer is available to represent me now because they are worn out by the Kho Jabing case (Or don't like me who knows XD)— Amos Yee (@amosyee) May 26, 2016
According to the report, the latest offenses that Yee allegedly committed from November 2015 and May this year are: uploading a video on Facebook around Nov. 28, 2015 that had anti-Islam remarks; failure to report to the Jurong Police Division on Dec. 14, 2015 despite police notice; uploading a video on his blog around Dec. 17, 2015 that, likewise, had remarks that were against Islam; uploading a video on YouTube around April 14 that contained anti-Christian remarks and gestures; uploading a photo on Facebook around April 17 that shows himself holding a copy of the Quran while sticking his middle finger out; uploading a video on YouTube on May 8 that had gestures and remarks against Islam; failure to report to the Jurong Police Division on May 10 despite a Magistrate's order; and uploading a video on YouTube and Vimeo on May 19 that shows gestures and remarks against Islam.