Woman not wearing mask arrested, faces more charges for breaching COVID-19 measures

Woman not wearing mask arrested, faces more charges for breaching COVID-19 measures


Phoon Chiu Yoke (1)

Phoon Chiu Yoke leaving the State Courts on May 24, 2021. (Photo: Jeremy Long)

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(Updated: )

SINGAPORE: A woman who was charged with not wearing a mask in public has been arrested and will face more charges for breaching COVID-19 regulations.

Phoon Chiu Yoke, 53, was arrested on Tuesday (May 25), a day after she appeared outside the State Courts for her trial without wearing a mask. She later put one on when asked to do so by a security officer.

Phoon arrived in Singapore from the United Kingdom on Jun 28 last year, said the police and the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) in a joint news release. 

As she was required to serve her stay-home notice at a dedicated facility until Jul 12, she was brought to a hotel in the downtown area after immigration clearance. 

Investigations showed that Phoon left her hotel room on several occasions and did not wear a mask while outside her room, said the police and ICA. 

She will be charged on Tuesday with exposing others to the risk of infection and for failing to wear a mask. 

READ: Trial postponed for woman charged with not wearing mask

Phoon failed to wear a mask in public on at least four occasions, including outside the State Courts at 1 Havelock Square on Monday, the authorities said. 

The three other incidents are: At a shopping mall along Eu Tong Sen Street on Dec 2, 2020; at a shopping mall along Bayfront Avenue on May 15; at a shopping complex along Bain Street on May 18.  

“Investigations into the woman’s alleged involvement in the several cases of failing to wear a mask in public places are ongoing,” said the police and ICA.

“Such conduct poses a real risk to public health given the current COVID-19 situation.” 

The police also said they have consulted the Attorney-General’s Chambers and will seek a court order to remand Phoon for psychiatric assessment.


Phoon was interviewed by the police on May 15 in their investigations into these incidents. Despite this, she re-offended, the police said in the news release.

If found not wearing a mask or not wearing one properly in public, she faces a fine of up to S$10,000, a jail term of up to six months, or both. 

If convicted of failing to comply with stay-home notice requirements, she faces similar punishments – a fine of up to S$10,000, a jail term of up to six months, or both. 

“Members of the public are advised to take the prevailing safe distancing measures seriously,” said the police and ICA, adding that people should cooperate with safe distancing ambassadors and enforcement officers and comply with their instructions.

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