Norwegian jailed in Singapore

Changi Prison, Singapore caningBehind the prison bars in Changi Prison, a 49-years-old Norwegians awaits a caning due to a sexual offense. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Norwegian faces caning in Singapore

A man from Eastern Norway is imprisoned in Singapore. Now he is waiting to be caned, according to Dagbladet.


The Norwegian is sentenced to one year in jail and caning, after molesting a unconscious woman in Singapore.

The small island state of Singapore is in several ways a mirror image of Norway: safe, clean, expensive, calm, modern and forward-looking. The soap operas sell the dream life on TV.

At the same time, there are things about Singapore which is diametrically contrary to anything we are used to in Norway, such as the tropical climate, the skyscrapers that are abundant in the city centre, the lack of freedom and the extreme penalties you have in store if you violate the laws of the country.

Strict laws

The tiny country, located just south of Malaysia, is renown for its strict laws and penal system. For the least serious crimes, such as eating or drinking aboard public transport, you can expect fines of well over NOK 20,000.

More serious crimes lead to long prison terms and up to 24 strokes by the cane.

The latter, a 49-year-old Norwegian man from the eastern region of Norway will painfully experience first hand.

Facts about the penal system of Singapore (Wikipedia)

The Penal Code defines the elements of each offence and prescribes the maximum, and occasionally also the minimum, penalties for it. The basic form of an offence (commonly referred to as the ‘simple offence’ or, using Latin terminology, as the ‘offence simpliciter’) has the lowest penalties. More serious forms of the offence are defined as separate offences and attract stiffer penalties.

For instance, theft is defined in section 378 of the Code, and section 379 makes simple theft (or theft simpliciter) an offence punishable with imprisonment of up to three years or with fine or both.

Section 379A punishes the theft of a motor vehicle or any component part of a motor vehicle with imprisonment of not less than one year and not more than seven years and a fine.

Sections 380 and 381 respectively make it offences to commit theft in any building, tent or vessel which is used as a human dwelling or for the custody of property; and, while being a clerk or servant, or being employed in the capacity of a clerk or servant, to commit theft of any property in the possession of one’s master or employer.

In both cases the penalty is imprisonment of up to seven years and a fine. The most serious theft offence is that of committing theft, having made preparation for causing death or hurt or restraint, or fear of death or of hurt or of restraint, to any person in order to commit the theft, or in order to effect an escape after committing the theft, or in order to retain property taken by the theft. The maximum penalty is imprisonment for up to ten years and caning with not less than three strokes.

An offender is usually charged with the most serious offences that can be established on the facts of the case. On representations being made by the offender’s lawyer to the prosecuting authority, the Prosecution may agree to charge the offender with lesser offences provided that he or she agrees to plead guilty to the reduced charges.


© Dagbladet / #Norway Today