Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Teo Ming, Dave 兵变

Teo Ming, Dave is the most talkabout person in Singapore the past few days. A 20-year old full-time NS man stationed at the Mandai Hill Camp, on Monday evening, he disappeared from his guard duty together with his SAR-21 assault rifle and ammunition! The police and the Singapore Armed Forced started an island wide manhunt and finally tracked him down through his handphone signal. 20 hours after his disapperance, Dave Teo was arrested on the 3rd floor toilet of Cathay Cineleisure at Orchard Road, with his SAR-21 assault rifle & ammunition.
It was very lucky nobody was hurt in the incident. Just imagine he opens fire at Cathay Cineleisure, how many lives will be lost! (Ok, he did not have that many bullets, thank God)

This incident also shows how fast news can spread in this information age. Shortly after Dave's arrest, news already came out in one of the online forums - Then later, it appeared in as well as many other online forums in Singapore. People went to friendster, flickr to look for his photos. That is not the end yet. As people are curious about his intentions, some mananged to find out his ex-girlfriend's blog. Voila! Another shock.

It appeared that Dave Teo broke up with his girlfriend of 3 years 5 months ago. To make things worse, his ex-girlfriend soon found her new love, a new love of a SHE.

The whole event became even more complicated when the police charged a 2nd person - Ong Boon Jun, 21. Ong is said to spend some time with Dave in a Geylang hotel on Monday morning. What the heck were two young men doing with a rifle in a red-light district hotel room?

There are many questions unanswered in this incident.

1. How did he sneak out his army camp with his SAR-21? Don't they have guards?
2. What happened to his guard duty partner? Was he the one who raised the alarm?
3. How did he go from Mandai Hill Camp, which is near Woodlands, to Geylang, and then Orchard Road with a BIG piece of weapon unnoticed? (Well, probably everybody thinks it was a toy rifle)
4. Why did it take a full 20 hours for the police and SAF joint forces to track him down and arrest him?

If it is true that he deserted his duty just for his ex-girlfriend, then it is really a stupid & rush act of the young chap. Considering he is going to leave the army in a month's time. Instead of leaving the army with honour, he now has to face a 5-10 years jail term, and maybe 12 strokes of caning.

The Straits Times report is available here:

The online New Paper report is available here:,4136,140919,00.html

Background Information:

All Singapore males reaching the age of 18 have to serve national service, and many of them start to have problems with their girl-friends. Some end up with a broken-heart after their 2-year national service.

For people who have never seen a SAR-21 assault rifle before, here is how it looks:

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