CNA – A 29-year-old man was given life imprisonment with 15 strokes of the cane yesterday for murdering his girlfriend’s nine-month-old son in a van in Yishun, Singapore.
Mohamed Aliff Mohamed Yusoff was sentenced after a High Court judge convicted him in July of murder.
Justice Mavis Chionh said that the death penalty was not warranted in this case, and noted that the prosecution did not seek it.
The victim, Izz Fayyaz Zayani Ahmad, died of traumatic intracranial haemorrhage caused by blunt force trauma.
On November 7, 2019, Aliff, Izz and Izz’s mother Nadiah Abdul Jalil went out for dinner, during which the couple had a disagreement over how to discipline the baby for spilling a drink.
After dinner, Aliff volunteered to take care of Izz for the night and Nadiah agreed. Aliff then drove Izz to a multi-storey car park at Yishun Street 81.
The prosecution’s case was that Aliff inflicted blunt force trauma to Izz by pushing his head against the van’s wooden floorboard at least twice between 10pm and 12.15am that night.
Aliff’s defence was that the victim’s death was an accident. He claimed that Izz “fidgeted and fell” from his right arm while he was trying to close the van’s door and holding things in his left hand.
He claimed that the baby hit the floorboard of the van’s rear cabin headfirst, bounced and hit his head again on the edge near the van’s floor, then fell to the ground.
Justice Chionh said that the courts had found the death penalty was appropriate when an offender acted in a way that showed viciousness or disregard for human life. She found that Izz’s death was not such a case.
On top of life imprisonment, the prosecution asked for 15 to 18 strokes of the cane. The defence sought five to six strokes of the cane, but the judge said this was manifestly inadequate.
Justice Chionh previously ruled that the prosecution had proven its case beyond reasonable doubt.
She found that the version of events in which Aliff pushed the baby’s head against the floorboard was consistent with the autopsy findings, citing expert evidence.
In contrast, the version in which Aliff fidgeted and fell was not supported by the autopsy findings and medical opinion, said the judge.