In response to Media queries
CNB conducted investigations into a person who was suspected of trafficking a Class A controlled drug online. CNB arrested the subject, later ascertained to be ‘Justin’, in the evening of 3 February 2021. The arrest took place at Serangoon North Ave 4. Based on investigations, drugs were recovered by CNB from another location in the vicinity of Serangoon North Ave 4. The evidence indicated that the drugs belonged to ‘Justin’ and that they were meant for sale. ‘Justin’ was released on bail the next day, on 4 February 2021.
The Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) directed in June 2021 that ‘Justin’ be charged for drug trafficking offences, under the Misuse of Drugs Act. ‘Justin’ was asked to report to CNB Headquarters on 23 June 2021. He was served with the charges when he reported and was released on the same day. He was then charged in Court on 24 June 2021 and released on Court bail. (Normally, persons charged with drug-related offences will not be released on bail, until produced in Court. Nevertheless, CNB made an exception and released ‘Justin’ after he was served with the charges on 23 June 2021, because he was 17 years old.)
CNB is aware that ‘Justin’ had unfortunately passed away on 16 September 2021 after he had fallen from height. Police are investigating into his death.
Some statements have been made publicly about how ‘Justin’ was arrested and questioned. CNB has been investigating the circumstances of his arrest. The investigations are expected to be completed before end October 2021. Upon the conclusion of the investigations, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) intends for the findings to be made available publicly. The allegations are being fully investigated.
Upon learning of ‘Justin’’s death, senior officials from CNB have been engaging ‘Justin’’s mother since 20 September 2021. They last met her on 8 October 2021 (last Friday). CNB assured her that there would be full investigations and provided her with the timeframe required for the investigations. She was also told that the findings will be shared with her.
‘Justin’’s mother wrote a letter on 1 October 2021 to the Minister for Home Affairs, K Shanmugam. The Minister contacted ‘Justin’’s mother personally on the same day to assure her that a thorough review into ‘Justin’’s arrest and investigations will be conducted.
‘Justin’’s mother was also provided with the contact details for Minister Shanmugam and Minister of State for Ministry of Home Affairs, Assoc Prof Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim. She was told that she could contact the Ministers directly, at any time, on this matter.
CNB has also arranged for psychological support to be provided to her during this difficult period.
CNB understands ‘Justin’’s mother’s grief and will continue to render assistance to her.
As stated earlier, once investigations are completed, the findings will be shared with the mother. Upon completion of the investigations, MHA will also take further steps as necessary.
CENTRAL NARCOTICS BUREAU
13 October 2021