Singapore May Cane U.S. Man Who Overstayed Visa

Shades of teenager Michael Fay, only this time it's a Florida businessman who overstayed his visa. Sinapore is deciding whether to impose caning as a punishment on Kamari Charlton, 37, a former Florida State University college football player who owns a construction company in Florida.

Charlton's case is unique, his defense team argues. His wife was in the country on a six-month medical visa, while he was on a three-month tourist visa. Unlike most offenders who overstay, Maaran said, Charlton was not in Singapore to take advantage of its strong economy by working illegally. He overstayed by 169 days, according to court documents.

Charlton was arrested as he was leaving Singapore with his pregnant wife. He also faces six months in jail.[More...]

Initially, caning was only used for violent crimes. Then, Singapore added vandalism types of offenses. And then, immigration offenses. From a 1994 article on Michael Fay:

Preventive detention laws allow authorities to lock up suspected criminals without trial. While caning is mandatory in cases of vandalism, rape and weapons offenses, it is also prescribed for immigration violations such as overstaying visas and hiring of illegal workers. The death penalty is automatic for drug trafficking and firing a weapon while committing a crime. At dawn on May 13, six Malaysians were hanged for drug trafficking, bringing to seventeen the number executed for such offenses so far this year, ten more than the total number of prisoners executed in all of 1993.

How it's done:

I refused to ever go to Singapore after the Michael Fay incident, and now I know I made the right choice. What a barbarian culture.

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    Couldn't pay me to go... (none / 0) (#1)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 22, 2010 at 08:16:59 AM EST
    to Singapore either...not till the people over there straighten out their authorities...they make our own sick situation look rosey.  

    I hope our immigration authoritarians don't get any ideas.

    I think its sad that our addiction (none / 0) (#2)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Oct 22, 2010 at 08:38:53 AM EST
    to capital punishment saps our ability as a country to take the high road here and in similar situations.  but I think it does.

    No doubt... (none / 0) (#3)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 22, 2010 at 08:59:51 AM EST
    Our house is a thin gauge of glass...in fact I don't think there is a a house made of stone in the entire world.

    true, (none / 0) (#4)
    by cpinva on Fri Oct 22, 2010 at 12:25:58 PM EST
    What a barbarian culture

    but, it's really, really clean there! of course, the US isn't in such a great moral position to castigate other countries.

    • detention without charges/trial
    • officially sanctioned assassinations, of US citizens abroad, with no charges/trial
    • illegal wars without end, amen
    • execution methods of your choice, using only the finest, untested, foreign made chemicals

    i could go on, but why bother?

    First I like Singapore! (none / 0) (#5)
    by Gerald USN Ret on Fri Oct 22, 2010 at 04:44:04 PM EST
    Does it have some old fashioned ways?  That is one way to phrase it?  Yes it does for it is in many ways an ancient place.  Canning originally was for "shaming" as much as for physical punishment. In the old days shaming was considered very severe.

    But the laws are clear.  For the most part, anyway.

    I think that Mr Charlton will prefer the canning at least in lieu of the possible 6 month incarceration.  He is a foot ball player, and he knows that the pain will be fleeting, but that his wife needs him.

    If they also impose the jail time, that will be far worse.

    Now please don't think that I am saying that I believe that Mr Charlton should be canned or imprisoned.  I am not.  What I am saying basically is that when you go into a different culture it behooves you to be aware of the differences.

    I have sailed the world, and there was places and times where I didn't step ashore without an escort familiar, and also prepared for the local citizens and their laws and habits.

    SINGAPORE - A 37-year-old American national, arrested on Sept 1 at Changi Airport as he was about to depart Singapore, faced fresh charges on Friday in connection with a phone scam, in which he allegedly cheated an Australian of A$17,000 ($21,700).

    It has also emerged that Kamari Kenyada Charlton, 37, is a wanted man.

    Responding to media queries, the Singapore police said that a police gazette for Charlton's arrest had been issued "following a number of criminal complaints made against him, including two through Interpol by a foreign police agency".

    Then he is a very stupid man. (none / 0) (#7)
    by Gerald USN Ret on Sat Oct 23, 2010 at 01:32:29 AM EST
    You don't steal in a country that cuts off the hands of thieves.

    You don't mess with drugs when the penalty is death.

    You don't risk jail where the prisons are horrendous.

    Mr Charlton would have done better to go to one of our enlightened Western American States where he could get could free legal counsel, and only break Federal laws so he could go to a nice Federal prison.


    Indeed. (none / 0) (#8)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sat Oct 23, 2010 at 03:39:36 PM EST