Public Prosecutor v Tan Eng Heong [2010] SGDC 303

Suit No    : DAC No 58815/2009, Magistrate’s Appeal No 156/2010
Decision Date    : 20 July 2010
Court    : District Court
Coram    : Hamidah Bte Ibrahim
Counsel    : N K Anitha (APP) for the prosecution; Vijay Rai (Arbiter’s Inc Law Corporation) for the accused.




20 July 2010  

District Judge Hamidah Bte Ibrahim:

1       The accused person, namely Tan Eng Heong, claimed trial and was convicted of 1 charge of voluntarily causing grievous hurt under section 325 of the Penal Code. The particulars of the charge are as follows:

DAC 55815/2009 (P1A)



NRIC NO: S2552210I

D.0.B: 27/9/1962


are charged that you, on 17 April 2009, at or about 8.00 pm, along Braddell Road, near Building and Construction Authority Academy, Singapore, did voluntarily cause grievous hurt to one Chua Cheng Hai, to wit, by hitting him on his left arm using a wooden pole and causing a fracture of his left ulna, and you have thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 325 of the Penal Code, Chapter 224.

The Prosecution’s Case

2       The prosecution called 4 witnesses. They included the victim, one Chua Cheng Hai, the doctor who examined him, the police officer who recorded the statement of the accused and the investigating officer. The accused’s daughter, who was on the list of witnesses for the prosecution, was offered to the defence.

Chua Cheng Hai (‘Chua’), PW2

3       Chua testified that on the evening of the 17th of April, 2009 at about 8 pm he was driving his Mercedes van along the middle lane of Braddell road. The accused was driving his Toyota car on the lane just next to him on the left. He then filtered to the left lane by cutting in front of the accused. Chua added that he filtered in such a way that it was too close for comfort to the accused. After he filtered to the left and was travelling in front of the accused, the latter then overtook him on his left using the bus bay. The accused then jammed his brakes and Chua overtook him again. At this juncture, according to Chua, he was travelling alongside the accused and wanted to cut in front of the accused again. Their vehicles then collided with damage to his front passenger side and to the driver’s side of the accused’s car.

4       After the collision, Chua stopped his vehicle at the left lane and alighted as he wanted to inspect it. He stood next to the front passenger side. The accused also parked his car and alighted but Chua was not sure as to where the accused had parked his car exactly. He then saw the accused approaching him with a stick. As he thought that the accused wanted to talk tough with the stick, he did not run away. The accused then swung the wooden stick at him. He blocked the blow from the stick with his left hand which is his master hand. He could not snatch the stick from the accused who swung it at him a few more times. At that juncture, Chua heard a girl screaming. The scream came from the accused’s car which was rolling forward. The accused went back to his vehicle and Chua took the opportunity to run away. He drove to the Ang Mo Kio police station to make a report, P8 and then sought treatment from Changi General Hospital as the stick had landed on his left forearm causing him to be in pain. The doctor operated on him the next morning and in total he was on medical leave for 131 days.

5       Chua described the stick as a long, wooden pole which the accused took from the backseat of his car. When shown a mop stick (P5), he said that it was not the wooden pole used by the accused but the length of the wooden pole was roughly about the length of the mop stick. The pole was thicker than the mop stick and had a varnished coating.

6       In cross-examination, Chua who works as an installer of laundry hangers, testified that just before he cut into the accused’s lane, the latter was travelling on the extreme left. He did not know whether the accused was angry with him when he did this. When the accused took the stick out from his car, the car was stationary. Chua denied that he had pushed the accused or that the accused took the stick for self defence because he was being aggressive. He maintained that the accused came towards him and attacked him with the wooden pole. The accused hit him a few times with the pole. When he made P8 at the police station, he was in pain and wanted to finish the report quickly so that he could seek treatment.

Dr Ramesh s/o Subramaniam (‘Dr Ramesh’) PW1

7       Dr Ramesh, currently with the National University Hospital, was the registrar of the department of orthopaedic surgery of Changi General Hospital (CGH) in May, 2009. He confirmed that he had put up the medical report,P2, dated the 10th of May, 2009 on Chua. When Chua sought treatment at the CGH he had a swelling on the left arm and there was pain and tenderness on examination. The x-rays revealed that he had a mid shaft ulna fracture of the left arm. The fracture was in the middle portion of the bone and it was a comminuted fracture which meant that it was not a simple 2 pieces fracture as the bone was broken into 3 definite pieces. He was of the view that it would have required a moderate amount of force to cause the fracture. Dr Ramesh explained that the ulna is the smaller and narrow bone of 2 bones in the lower arm. The ulna is unique in that it is a subcutaneous bone which means it is just below the skin with not much muscle covering it and any impact or force is transmitted directly to it. When shown a mop stick, Dr Ramesh said that if it had been used to hit Chua with a direct blow it could have caused the injury.

8       He operated on Chua on the 18th of April, 2009 and fixed his broken ulna with metal plates and screws. There were 2 medical certificates,P3 and P4, issued for Chua. In P3 another doctor gave him medical leave for 13 days from the 18th of April to the 30th of April, 2009. In P4, Dr Ramesh granted Chua medical leave for 45 days from the 28th of April to the 11th of June, 2009. In total, it was for a period of 55 days. This was meant to cover the period of recovery and allow the fracture to heal which would normally take about 3 months. When he was reviewed on the 10th of June, 2009, Chua was given a certificate for light duties.

9       When cross-examined, Dr Ramesh confirmed that Chua was first attended at the A and E department of CGH on the 17th of April, 2009 at 10.54 pm, admitted to the ward at 1.45 am and had the surgery at 11.20 am on the 18th of April, 2009. It was documented that Chua was a left handed person. The case notes indicated that Chua had been hit by a thick wooden pole once at the left forearm. Dr Ramesh maintained that the comminution of the fracture indicated that a moderate amount of force had been transmitted to the bone and the fracture pattern indicated a direct impact or blow to the bone.

Inspector Sum Tuck Meng (‘Insp Sum’), PW3 and Senior Staff Sergeant Mohammad Fareed Bin Rahmat (‘SSgt Fareed’), PW4

10     Insp Sum is a police officer attached to Geylang NPC. In May, 2009 he was with the Ang Mo Kio police station and testified that he was the original investigating officer of the case. On the 21st of April, 2009, Insp Sum attended to the accused when he came to the Ang Mo Kio police station. When the accused arrived he surrendered one wooden pole with a mop, P5. This exhibit was reflected in the seizure report, P17.

11     On the same day Insp Sum interviewed the accused and thereafter proceeded to record the statement. This was admitted as P18 as the accused agreed that he had given the statement voluntarily. The statement was an account of what the accused said had happened on the 17th of April, 2009. He admitted having used the mop to hit the victim after they had the accident. When questioned as to why he had the mop in his car, the accused said that the mop was used by his wife, a property agent, to clean houses that she leases out to tenants. At the end of the recording, the accused read his statement, made some amendments and signed it after confirming the statement was accurate. The amendments included an addition to paragraph 8 wherein the accused said he was willing to compensate for the victim’s medical expenses. Insp Sum did not sign the statement himself as he had forgotten to do so.

12     SSgt Fareed, the current investigating officer of the case, tendered the conditioned statements of the police photographer who had taken the 7 photographs of the scene, P10 to P16 and 3 photographs of the mop, P19 to P21. He had also taken 6 photographs, P22 to P27, of the victim driving his van on the 2nd of March, 2010. SSgt Fareed explained that he took P22 to P27 to show to the court the location of the gear box of the van as the victim said that he drove his van with his right hand after his left hand was injured in the incident.

13     The prosecution closed its case with the testimony of SSgt Fareed. I invited the accused to enter his defence to the charge and administered the standard allocution after explaining the 2 courses of action to him. The accused elected to remain silent. However, he accepted the prosecution’s offer of his daughter, one Eunice Tan Xue Qi, as his witness.

Eunice Tan Xue Qi (‘Eunice’), DW1

14     Eunice, the 17 year old daughter of the accused, testified that she was familiar with the incident of the 17th of April, 2009. She identified the mopstick P5 as being involved in the encounter between the accused and Chua, whom she described as the van driver. This mop which was used to clean a house, was kept in the accused ’s car and it was placed on the floor between the driver’s seat and the door. She did not know how it was taken out from the car.

15     When cross-examined, Eunice said that her father was travelling on the left lane and traffic was heavy. There was a jam before the turning into the CTE. The van driver cut into her father’s lane and he horned. He did not cut into the path of the van. The van driver was not able to cut through successfully and he pulled back and rammed into her father’s car. Her father was shocked and he stopped his car. He then took out his stick as a deterrence as the van driver was hostile and aggressive. During the first encounter, he did not take out the stick. He did so after she called out to him that the car was rolling back. Her father returned to his car to check whether she was “ok”, took out the stick and then walked back to encounter the van driver with it.

The Decision

16     The accused stands charged with 1 count of having voluntarily caused grievous hurt to the victim, one Chua Cheng Hai (Chua) on the 17th of April, 2009 at about 8 pm along Braddell road by hitting Chua’s left arm with a wooden pole and thus causing a fracture of the left ulna. This is an offence under section 325 of the Penal Code.

17     In order to prove their case against the accused, the prosecution relied principally on Chua’s testimony. Before I touch on his evidence it would be pertinent at this juncture to mention the undisputed facts of this case. Firstly, it was not disputed that after the collision between their 2 vehicles on the 17th of April, 2009 at about 8 pm, both the accused and Chua stopped their vehicles and alighted. It was also not disputed that both had an encounter with each other. It would appear that the accused did not challenge too the fact that he was holding a wooden stick which he took from his car when he had the encounter with Chua. Further, the defence did not dispute the fact that Chua sustained a fracture of his ulna after his encounter with the accused. A fracture has been designated as grievous hurt under section 320 of the Penal Code.

18     With regard to Chua’s evidence, I noted that his account as to what happened after he and the accused alighted from their respective vehicles was fairly straightforward. The accused approached him with a wooden pole which he had taken out from his car. The accused then hit him with the wooden pole a few times. The accused ceased the attack and returned to his car which was rolling when he heard his daughter screaming. This gave Chua the opportunity to flee the scene which he did by getting into his van and driving off. He was later treated at CGH for his fractured ulna by Dr Ramesh and was on medical leave for a total of 55 days from the 18th of April, 2009 to the 11th of June, 2009.

19     While there were no independent witnesses who saw what happened on the material date to Chua, I was of the view that there was substantive corroboration of his testimony. Most importantly, he did sustain a fracture to his left forearm and it was the unchallenged evidence of Dr Ramesh that the comminution of the fracture indicated that a moderate amount of force had been transmitted to the bone and the fracture pattern indicated a direct impact or blow to the bone. Since the only impact to his left forearm occurred when the accused hit him with a wooden pole, according to Chua, it would follow therefore that the fracture was caused by the accused. Although the defence had suggested that it could have been caused if Chua’s forearm had hit the steering wheel of his van, this was at best speculative as there was no evidence of such a possibility having occurred.

20     The defence had also raised other possible causes for the fracture to Chua’s ulna. This included the fact that he drove himself to the police station and to the hospital after the incident, that it was caused because of the accident between the 2 vehicles or that Chua braked suddenly. Chua had testified that he was able to drive because he used his right hand. In any event, Dr Ramesh had testified that as the fracture was caused by a direct blow, Chua’s wrist and hand was not affected and he could still drive depending on his ability to tolerate pain. I observed that the accident between Chua’s vehicle and the accused’s vehicle was not major. The accused in P18 said he heard a screeching sound and the right side mirror of his car was broken. This account supported Chua’s description of the accident being in the nature of a side swipe between 2 vehicles. There was no major impact to Chua’s body. It could not have caused the fracture to his ulna. With the traffic being heavy at the material time, there would be no cause too for Chua to brake suddenly after the accident when all he wanted to do was to inspect the damage to his vehicle.

21     With regard to the stick, it would appear that the fact that a stick was used also came from the defence sole witness, namely the accused’s daughter Eunice. For reasons which were perfectly understandable, Eunice preferred to use words to the effect that the mop stick was “involved”[note: 1] in the incident when she gave her examination in chief. However, during her cross-examination, she was more forthcoming and said “My dad came back to the car to check if I was OK. And he took out the stick and walked back to encounter the van driver.[note: 2] Her evidence was explicitly clear therefore and can only be interpreted to mean that the accused had confronted the victim with the wooden stick which was what the victim said had happened. This therefore corroborated Chua’s evidence. While she stopped short of saying it was used by her father on the victim, it was perhaps because she remained in the car and did not see the assault or out of a sense of loyalty, she chose to say nothing.

22     Further, of greater significance to the prosecution’s case was the long statement of the accused, P18, which he agreed that he gave voluntarily on the 21st of April, 2009 to Insp Sum. In this statement, the accused made an unequivocal admission that he had used a wooden pole to hit Chua. He stated that he was pushed by Chua, after both alighted from their respective vehicles after the collision. He went back to his car, after hearing Eunice screamed and “ …I took out a wooden pole which was placed beside my seat on the floor.[note: 3]” He went on to say “ I then took the wooden pole and approached the said man. ……. and I used both my hands to hold onto the pole and I remembered hitting him about 3 times on his upper body.[note: 4] Finally, in his reply to the question posed as to why he used the wooden pole to hit the van driver, the accused answered “ I wanted to use the wooden pole to scare the said driver. But when we had a scuffle, I then used the pole to hit him.[note: 5]

23     According to the unchallenged evidence of Insp Sum, the accused had requested to include an amendment to paragraph 8, which was the last paragraph of P18, wherein he agreed to compensate the medical expenses of the victim. By so agreeing, it was indeed a manifestation and an acknowledgment of guilt on his part, which I also took into account in determining whether the prosecution had proven its case against him. When Insp Sum was cross-examined, it was suggested to him that the accused had actually used the word “reimburse” and not compensate. Since the accused elected to remain silent, this was nothing more than a mere suggestion without any basis and in my view, the word reimbursement does not exculpate him. If he did not cause the injury to the victim by using the wooden pole, there would have been no need for him to make any offer of compensation or reimbursement to the victim.

24     This was a case where the accused chose to remain silent after his defence was called. From the line of questioning of Chua when he was cross-examined, it would appear that the defence took the position that the accused had taken the stick for self defence[note: 6]. This was denied by Chua. While it can be presumed that this position must have been taken based on the accused’s instructions, his failure to take the stand to assert his position formally and thereby giving the prosecution to test the veracity of his defence, suggested strongly that it was nothing more than a bare claim.

25     On the matter of the accused electing to remain silent, I was mindful of the fact that, that silence affords the court the drawing of inferences that appear to be proper according to section 196(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code. It would be relevant now to refer to the case of Oh Laye koh v PP [1994] SGCA 102   where the court had this to say:

“Essentially, the process would have involved the trial judge’s consideration of whether on the totality of the prosecution witnesses’ evidence (as tested in cross-examination), together with any inference that could properly be drawn from the Appellant’s silence, the Appellant’s guilt could be established beyond reasonable doubt. It appeared to us that the trial judge was eminently justified in drawing an adverse inference from the appellant’s silence. ………………. Having chosen to remain silent, the appellant ran the risk of having an adverse inference drawn against him under section 196(2) of the CPC. By not rebutting the evidence, which as it then stood would have warranted his conviction if unrebutted, the apellant’s silence presented the trial judge with an additional factor to consider in assessing whether the appellant’s guilt had been established beyond reasonable doubt. That is precisely the effect of an inference contemplated by s 196(2). In the trial judge’s own words, the appellant’s silence was an additional link which completed the chain of evidence. By this, we took the trial judge to mean that the appellant’s silence, considered cumulatively with the other evidence, was sufficient to establish the appellant’s guilt beyond reasonable doubt.”

26     The Court of Appeal in Oh Laye Koh did not say that silence on the part of an accused person following the finding of a case to answer inevitably leads to a conclusion of guilt. It is not the case that all instances of silence should result in the drawing of an adverse inference. In the case of PP v Poh Oh Sim [1990] SLR 1047   and Chan Kim Choi v PP [1991] SLR 34  , adverse inferences were not drawn. What is a proper inference has been explained in various cases. In the oft quoted case of Haw Tua Tau, “ What inferences are proper to be drawn from an Appellant’s refusal to give evidence depend upon the circumstances of the particular case, and is a question to be decided by applying ordinary commonsense……”

27     The above approach has been adopted and endorsed in various cases, including Oh Laye Koh. The court must consider the circumstances of the specific case and the state of the evidence to determine whether an explanation is called for from the accused person. At the same time, the court must be mindful that keeping silent does not necessarily mean an adverse inference should be drawn. With these principles in mind, I was of the view that the accused would have been in the best position to tell the court whether he was justified in any way in using the wooden pole against Chua. The accused would have been in the best position to tell the court the level of aggression, if any, on the part of Chua which would warranted him using the wooden pole to hit Chua with sufficient force causing him to sustain a fracture of his ulna. As such, I was prepared to draw an adverse inference against the accused from his silence.

28     Further, since the accused chose to remain silent and did not offer his version as to what happened, I saw no reason to reject Chua’s evidence as to what happened which led to the assault. I am aware that Eunice has testified that the accused took the stick to protect her but she has also conceded that Chua was not attacking her at that juncture. While she claimed that Chua was hostile and aggressive, all she could offer weakly for this description of Chua was to say that he came across as very angry. She refused to acknowledge the point made by the prosecution that by going forward towards Chua with the wooden stick, the accused was the aggressive party, and not Chua.

29     On the issue of Chua’s credibility, the defence has submitted that there were inconsistencies in his evidence as he said in court that the accused’s car rolled forward but in his police report (P8) he stated that the car started to roll back. Chua has explained that what he meant was that the accused’s car moved and the accused went to attend to it. He could not remember whether it rolled forward or backward. What was crucial was the fact that Chua’s evidence that the car did move was supported by the accused’s witness Eunice who said that the car did move and whether it went forward or backward was really immaterial. This was also a very minor point which did not dent Chua’s credibility. The undeniable fact was that the car did move.

30     In fact, Chua also added that when he made his police report, he was in pain and wanted to quickly end the report so that he could seek treatment. This could have accounted for some details, other than whether the car did move or not, being not mentioned in his report. Chua’s explanation was perfectly acceptable in my view. Under these circumstances when he had an accident, had an encounter when he was hit by the accused with the wooden stick resulting in him fleeing from the scene with his injured arm and in pain, it was reasonable that his priority was to go to CGH as soon as possible for treatment. While it was true that he could have asked the police to call for the ambulance, I saw nothing sinister in his practical approach of going to the hospital by himself. Against this background, any failure on Chua’s part to mention each and every little detail of the incident was, in my view excusable and did not point to him having fabricated any evidence.


31     In the final analysis, based on the totality of the evidence, which included Chua’s evidence as well as Dr Ramesh’s and the accused’s voluntary statement in P18, I made a finding that the accused had hit Chua on his left arm resulting in Chua sustaining a fracture of his ulna which fell under the definition of grievous hurt. When the accused held the wooden pole with both his hands and hit Chua’s upper body with it, by his own admission thrice, he must have had the intention to cause grievous hurt to Chua. I decided that all the elements to establish the charge under section 325 of the Penal Code had been made out and held that the prosecution had successfully discharged its burden of proving the case beyond a reasonable doubt. The accused was hence convicted of the charge. Upon his conviction, the prosecution informed me that the accused was a first offender.

32     In mitigation, his defence counsel said that this was the accused’s first brush with the law. The entire incident was caused by Chua who cut twice into the accused’s path. There was no pre-meditation and by offering to reimburse Chua for his medical expenses indicated the accused’s state of mind. Counsel ended his plea by urging for a fine and when it was pointed to him that imprisonment was mandatory, he asked for a minimal jail term of 1 day.

33     The prosecution responded to the mitigation plea by submitting that there is a strict policy against road rage offences which extends to first time offenders. Citing the case of PP v Lim Seck Hing [1992] 2 SLR 745  , the learned APP added that dangerous driving by the victim should not be an excuse. She also highlighted that the usual sentence for a section 325 offence would be a jail term with caning. The defence replied that the provocation here was not slight.

34     In determining the appropriate sentence, I noted that the prescribed punishment for the offence of voluntary causing grievous hurt under section 325 of the Penal Code is imprisonment for a term which may extend to 10 years and the offender is also liable to a fine or to caning.

35     I agreed with the prosecution that offences which can be classified as involving road rage incidents have generally attracted custodial sentences. It is pertinent to get an understanding of the rationale and the factors behind this sentencing principle. From the cases of PP v Lee Seck Hing [supra] (where there was a sustained period of violence) and Ong Hwee Leong v PP [1992] 1 SLR 794  , it has been established that the rationale was general deterrence and the need to protect members of the public against acts of violence on our roads. In Ong Hwee Leong v PP [supra] and PP v Wong Sin Yee [2001] 3 SLR 197  , the accused persons had acted disproportionately over trivial incidents. In Chai Thiam Choi v PP [MA 228/92, unreported] and PP v Wong Sin Yee [supra], the accused persons had wielded weapons. Therefore, the need to impose custodial sentences in these cases of road rage was paramount in order to prevent the accused and other like-minded motorists from committing such crimes, on the slightest of provocation. Where the offence has resulted in grievous hurt being caused to the victim, caning should also be imposed.

36     While most of the road rage cases were prosecuted under section 323 of the Penal Code, in this instance it was under section 325 for which a substantial period of imprisonment is usually the norm. Caning would also be appropriate unless there are exceptional circumstances. The various factors which the courts usually consider include the extent and duration of the attack, the use of a weapon and the nature of the injuries which the victim has sustained as a result of the attack. Invariably each case has to be looked at on the basis of its own particular facts and circumstances. The main sentencing consideration will be that of general deterrence with a distinct element of denunciation.

37     Turning to the circumstances of the offences, I agreed with the prosecution that the fact that the victim had driven dangerously was no excuse for the accused to assault him with a wooden pole. The accused must have also exerted some force when he struck Chua’s arm to cause the comminuted fracture of his ulna as Dr Ramesh had testified that the fracture pattern indicated that a moderate amount of force had been transmitted to the bone. The extent of the injury on Chua was also reflected in the fact that he was on medical leave for a total of more than 100 days, inclusive of being placed on light duty.

38     With regard to the number of times the accused hit Chua with the wooden pole, he had testified that it was a few times and that he made contact with the pole more than 5 times. While Dr Ramesh said that the records from CGH indicated that Chua told the first examining doctor it was only once, this can only be regarded as hearsay as this doctor was not called and Chua could not remember having said such a thing. In my view, what was most pertinent was the accused’s own admission in his statement that “I remembered hitting him about 3 times on his upper body.[note: 7] This supported Chua’s account that he was assaulted with the wooden pole more than once.

39     As for the defence point of provocation, I found that even if Chua did cut into the accused’s lane twice without concern about the fact that the accused had the right of way, the accused not only overreacted but reacted excessively by hitting Chua with the wooden pole. I am aware that the accused has mentioned in his statement that Chua pushed him when both of them alighted from their respective vehicles. This was denied by Chua. However, even accepting that Chua did push, it was mentioned in the same statement that it was only once on the accused’s left shoulder. The accused was not injured. There was no shouting of vulgarities as both did not speak to each other. Accepting that a push can be viewed as provocative, the accused need not have retaliated in such a violent manner by using the wooden pole.

40     The accused, if I were to accept Eunice’s version, returned to the car to attend to her scream and removed the wooden pole which was kept on the floor of his car between their seats and the doors of the car. This would have necessitated some manoeuvring on his part, thereby giving him ample time to calm down before confronting the victim. Obviously, he did not or could not. One would have expected him to be concerned with the fact that his daughter was present and if Chua was as aggressive as Eunice made him out to be, the appropriate course of action was for him to call for the police there and then and wait for them in the safety of his car. At that moment when he was taking out the wooden pole, Chua was not with him or attacking him or Eunice, and while it was not a pre meditated act in the sense that he planned the attack on Chua, the use of violence cannot be tolerated under these circumstances.

41     In conclusion, having regard to all the circumstances of this case, including all the factors for and against the accused, I decided that it was appropriate to sentence him to a term of 6 months imprisonment. Considering that this was a conviction under section 325 of the Penal Code, this term of imprisonment cannot be regarded as harsh or manifestly excessive. Further, exercising leniency in his favour, I did not impose any caning.

42     The accused, being dissatisfied, is now appealing against his conviction and sentence. He is now on bail pending appeal.

[note: 1]At D of page 76 of the Notes of Evidence (NE).

[note: 2]At D of page 82 of the NE.

[note: 3]At the last 2 lines of paragraph 5 of P18.

[note: 4]At the first 3 lines of paragraph 6 of P18.

[note: 5]At A4 to Q4 in paragraph 7 of P18.

[note: 6]At E of page 31 of the NE.

[note: 7]At second and third line of paragraph 6 of P18.


Published by Singapore Academy of Law on behalf of the content providers.

Editors Note: On appeal the sentence was reduced to 1 month’s imprisonment.