Caught red-handed, this thief was willing to return the e-bike to its rightful owner – but that’s not all the owner wanted from him.
In a video uploaded to the SgfollowsAll Admin Instagram page today (June 6), a man confronted an e-bike thief at a HDB void deck in Woodlands after the thief allegedly stole it from him in Yishun.
In the two-minute long video, the e-bike owner first approached the man while the latter was fiddling with the rear of an e-bike with tools. Beside the thief was a toolbox and a line of other e-bikes.
“Brother, why you steal my bike?” The owner questioned. “You want to settle this peacefully, or [what do you want]?”
When the surprised man vehemently denied that he had stolen any e-bikes, the owner threatened to call the police and said that he had “already [made a] police report”.
The thief then repeatedly asked the owner to “wait”, then stood up and retrieved his belongings from the owner’s stolen e-bike saying: “Paiseh bro, you can take back [the bike].”
This enraged the owner who claimed he was a delivery driver and felt that the thief hadn’t just stolen his e-bike but also wasted his time and effort, making him lose opportunities to earn money.
After some back-and-forth between the two, they came to a compromise where the owner instructed the thief to apologise for stealing his e-bike along with additional conditions.
The thief was made to acknowledge on the same video that he stole the e-bike and that he would pay $2,000 to the owner, which he agreed to do.
“You will [make a] private settlement,” the e-bike owner stated in the video, “by paying $2,000 in two-weeks’ time.”
If the thief reneged on this, he will file a police report, the owner told the thief to say.
It is unclear when this incident took place.
While some comments called out the thief for stealing the e-bike, others felt that the owner’s demands were too much.
“[The way he asked] for $2,000 [was] threatening,” a user commented on the Instagram post. “Even though [the thief is] wrong, [the owner is] also wrong – he just wants to get the bike and a free $2,000.”
Multiple user comments on a Facebook mirror of this video on the Singapore Incidents Facebook page also asserted that both parties were in the wrong.
“If you report to police, [the thief] is wrong, if you extort him for money, you are wrong.” A Facebook comment said.
Said another: “Just make a police report, why try [to] settle it yourself? [Resorting] to extortion is a crime.”
Another user, however, felt that the owner was justified in asking for monetary compensation.
“Every day that the owner of the e-bike isn’t able to earn a living through grab delivery because he doesn’t have the bike with him is income lost,” the user stated. “He is at liberty to bill the thief even in court.”
This isn’t the first time a thief has been caught in the act and has apologised for it.
Last month, a man was caught stealing a bicycle in Paya Lebar and insincerely apologised for it and allegedly started throwing punches when the owner tried to call the police.
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