StanChart robbery suspect finally extradited and charged after 4 years
After attempts to avoid being extradited to Singapore, the Canadian arrived here yesterday
Nearly four years after allegedly robbing a Standard Chartered Bank branch in Holland Village, Canadian David James Roach, 30, was finally brought before a district court here to face robbery and money laundering charges.
After attempts to stop his extradition were quashed by British courts, Roach arrived in Singapore yesterday and was charged through video link in the afternoon.
He is accused of robbing $30,450 from an employee at the bank on July 7, 2016, between 11.05am and 11.20am.
He then fled to Thailand hours later, allegedly taking the criminal proceeds out of Singapore's jurisdiction.
District Judge Terence Tay denied Roach bail, agreeing with Deputy Public Prosecutor Marcus Foo that there was a high flight risk.
During the hearing, Roach said he was not asking for bail.
Court documents said he first entered Singapore on June 29, 2016, on a social visit pass. It was his first time here, and he did not know anyone.
During the alleged robbery, Roach handed a piece of paper that read "This is a robbery. I have a gun in my bag" to a woman manning a counter at the bank. He then placed his hand into his bag. Fearing for her life, the woman withdrew $30,450 in cash.
At 1.46pm, Roach boarded a plane to Bangkok.
In a statement, police said Singapore had been working closely with various jurisdictions to secure Roach's return.
He was detained in Thailand on July 10, 2016, deported to Canada in January 2018 after serving a 14-month jail term, and arrested again while transiting in London.
In October 2018, Roach was ordered to be extradited to Singapore. His application to appeal was rejected in August last year.
A second application was granted in October, but the appeal was limited to extradition on the money laundering charge.
The British High Court heard and dismissed the appeal on Feb 4. It rejected another application to reopen the extradition proceedings on March 5.
Roach was handed over to Singapore police on Monday.
A spokesman said the British Prison Service certified him as fit to travel after a medical examination, and Roach did not show any Covid-19 symptoms during a second medical examination upon arrival. While under legal custody, Roach will be placed under a 14-day segregation for observation.
Roach will return to court through video link on April 7. If convicted of robbery, he can be jailed for between two and 10 years and given at least six strokes of the cane.
If convicted of money laundering, he can be jailed for up 10 years and fined up to $500,000, or both.