Probation for man who stole father's driving license and NRIC to rent cars, had accident

Wan Ting Koh
·Senior Reporter
·3-min read
Hand holding a gavel.
Hand holding a gavel. (PHOTO: Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — A 20-year-old man who did not have a driving license stole his father’s NRIC and license and used them to rent cars for two months.

Xavier Tang Wei Jie got away with the impersonation until he grazed the side of a wall while leaving Oriental Plaza carpark and sent the car for repairs at a workshop.

The rental company, Smove Singapore, was informed of the incident and later repossessed the car.

Tang was given one-and-a-half years’ probation on Monday (29 March). He had pleaded guilty to six charges, involving cheating on at least 24 occasions between March and May 2019, inconsiderate driving, and driving without a valid license and without insurance coverage.

Another 47 charges, including driving without a valid license and insurance coverage from 14 March to 17 May, were taken into consideration for his sentence.

As part of his probation conditions, Tang will have to complete 80 hours of community service, adhere to a time curfew and refrain from driving any class of vehicles. His parents will also have to place a $5,000 bond to ensure their son’s good behaviour.

Tang stole his father’s NRIC and driving license from the latter’s wallet in March 2019. He took photographs of the documents and registered for an account in Smove. He then rented cars, paying about $33 for about four hours on each occasion.

He used the car to ferry friends and drive to work, and none of his friends knew that he did not have a valid driving license.

On 17 May 2019, Tang rented a car and drove around, ending up at Oriental Plaza carpark. On 18 May 2019, he returned to the carpark to pick up the car. As he was leaving, he caused the front bumper of the car to graze the side of the wall but did not report the accident to the management of the building.

He drove the rental vehicle to a car repair workshop located at Kaki Bukit Auto Hub to repair the scratches and left the car at the workshop at about 8.30am.

By the time he returned to collect the car at about noon, Smove had been informed of the incident, and representatives were at the workshop. Tang admitted to them that he was the driver of the car.

Cheating carries a jail term of up to three years, or a fine, or both. Inconsiderate driving carries a jail term of up to six months or a fine of up to $1,500 or both. Driving without a license carries a jail term of up to three years, and a fine of up to $10,000, or both. Driving without insurance carries a jail term of up to three months, or a maximum fine of up to $1,000, or both.

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