49-Year-Old Sleeps In East Coast Park Pavilion For Months In 2022, Also Brings Personal Belongings
East Coast Park is a popular place for Singaporeans to hang out inexpensively, with many liking to camp out under the stars.
However, camping is allowed only in designated areas with a permit. These areas certainly do not include the pavilions in the park.
However, one Singapore man was found sleeping in a pavilion multiple times in 2022.
He was sentenced to four days’ jail for the offence.
Man sleeps in East Coast Park pavilion over 3 months
Zeng Jianlong (transliterated from Mandarin) was accused of sleeping in pavilions around East Coast Park between March and June 2022, reported Shin Min Daily News.
In particular, National Parks Board (NPark) inspectors had found the 46-year-old sleeping in a pavilion several times between 8 Apr and 1 May last year.
This was between the hours of 3am and 6am, when they were conducting patrols in the park.
In December 2021, Zeng also entered and remained in a shelter that was cordoned off due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Man sleeps & ‘sets up home’ in East Coast Park pavilion
According to photos provided by the authorities, Zeng had seemingly “set up home” in the public rest stop.
He’d brought and placed his personal belongings there, including an inflatable mattress, folding table and chairs, mug, cooler box and fishing gear.
Additionally, he was also seen smoking in the pavilion despite the presence of a “no smoking” sign.
Man faced 6 charges, pleads guilty to 2
In court on Tuesday (30 May), the prosecutor noted that “living” in public parks isn’t allowed without permission from the authorities.
Even campers must apply for a camping permit to camp in tents at designated areas within the park.
Moreover, Zeng’s belongings had taken over the entire pavilion, leaving it unusable by members of the public.
He thus faced six charges under the Park and Trees Act.
After pleading guilty to two of them, the judge took the remaining charges under consideration when sentencing.
Eventually, he was fined S$1,400. As he said he was unable to pay the amount, he was sentenced to four days in jail instead.
Man gave no reason for actions
Zeng reportedly had nothing to say in mitigation for his actions.
He also gave no reason why he resorted to sleeping in East Coast Park.
However, at a previous hearing on 17 May, he claimed he didn’t know that a permit was needed to sleep there.
As for his belongings, the judge ordered him to clear them from the pavilion before the hearing on 30 May.
Zeng confirmed that he had done so at the beginning of the later hearing.
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Featured image adapted from NParks via Shin Min Daily News.
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