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    Two vending machines at Orchard Road and Raffles Place have apparently been dispensing 'free money' (well, almost) during these couple of days (Feb 27 and 28).

    It seems that by inserting $3, you can get a $50 note in return (while stocks last). That means you gain $47 with no strings attached.

    Stomp contributor Ahlee123 said she received a WhatsApp message yesterday (Feb 27) informing her about the cash vending machine located outside H&M's Somerset store.

    She said: "The message contained a link to #3DollarBaller, which led to a website that looked dubious. I was going to town anyway so I thought I would check it out.

    "There was a huge crowd and so many people were there lining up. People were inserting $3 cash and I really saw the machine giving out genuine $50 notes.

    "So I tried it and it was really LEGIT free money - the best barter trade ever?! Too good to be true. Don't know what's the catch here but something is definitely going on.

    "Was anyone else there today?? Any idea who and why they are giving out money??"

    Photos from Ahlee123 show that a long queue had formed at the vending machine in Somerset.

    The other vending machine is located at Raffles Place Green, near Chevron House.

    The event is believed to be a publicity stunt, though not much details have been revealed yet.

    According to the #3DollarBaller website, here are details of the two-day 'giveaway', which started on Tuesday (Feb 28) and will last till "all cash prizes are full redeemed".

    The website also promised that they would "reveal it all" tomorrow (March 1), so we'll just have to wait and see.

    Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - 15:32
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    Rain or shine, a granny has been delivering food to her widowed daughter every day for the past three years. 

    According to Lianhe Wanbao, the woman in her 70s would take a bus from Toa Payoh to Bedok Reservoir Road, where her daughter stays, just to deliver a meal. 

    Residents in the area say it’s a common sight to see the granny standing outside her daughter’s unit, knocking on the door and shouting her name.

    Sometimes, she would stand outside the door for more than two hours, just so she can catch a glimpse of her daughter’s face. 

    Reporters visited the block on Thursday evening (Feb 22) and a resident said that the granny had visited at around 4pm on the same day, and left at 6pm. 

    The resident also revealed that the woman visits the 7th-floor unit nearly every day. 

    A female neighbour, 30, who declined to be named told reporters that the granny’s daughter, in her 40s, is a widow. 

    Said the neighbour: "I heard from the granny that after her daughter’s husband passed away, she became a changed person. She would stay cooped up in her flat all day long and never take a step out. 

    "The granny has to visit every day just to deliver food to her.”

    Reporters visited the block again the following afternoon (Feb 23) at around 4pm, and saw the granny, carrying a plastic bag and knocking on the door of the seventh floor unit. 

    She kept calling out her daughter’s name as she knocked until her voice was coarse.

    Still, no one answered the door. 

    The granny became exhausted after a while and left for the void deck, where she sat on a stone bench to take a break. 

    At around 6pm, she went up to the unit again, knocking on the door and pleading with her daughter to open the door. 

    She stood outside the door for around 15 minutes before someone finally came to the door. 

    Reporters observe a thin woman standing at the door.

    The granny had an expression of happiness written over her face as she handed over a meal box and bread over to the woman. 

    Standing outside the metal gates, the granny talked to the woman, who had no visible reactions. 

    The granny did not seem to mind and continued chatting as she watched her daughter polish up the food in the box. 

    About half an hour later, she collected the empty meal box and left happily. 

    Reporters then approached the granny and spoke to her.

    She told them that she stays in Toa Payoh and will take a bus every day to Bedok Reservoir Road to deliver food to her daughter.

    Sighing, she said: "After her husband passed away, she never once went out by herself. If I don’t come over, how will she get food?"

    Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - 16:28
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    A Buri Ram-based teacher allegedly sexually assaulted his student and blackmailed her for sex for nearly two years, an audio clip has indicated.

    The clip, which was released by the 14-year-old alleged victim's family on Wednesday, apparently recorded her telephone conversation with the 57-year-old teacher, who remained unidentified on Wednesday.

    The conversation indicated that the teacher had tried to arrange a rendezvous with her and finally threatened to release a clip on social media of her being sexually abused if she did not respond to his demands.

    The girl was allegedly first sexually abused at her school in Buri Ram's Nang Rong district in 2016, when she was just 12.

    The teacher then allegedly forced her to have sex with him using blackmail.


    Photo: The Nation/Asia News Network

    The girl reportedly had been too afraid to report the teacher to authorities, but her mother noticed that something was bothering her and found out about the attacks in the subsequent conversation.

    On February 12, the mother lodged a complaint against the teacher with Nang Rong Police Station.

    Police responded by following the girl to a resort where the teacher had prepared a rendezvous and arrested him. He was wearing nothing but towel at the time of the arrest.

    This week, the teacher was transferred out of his school pending an investigation by the Education Ministry.

    "I will fight to the end to bring him to justice," the mother of the alleged victim said.

    According to a report by the Office of Teacher Civil Service and Educational Personnel Commission, 190 teachers faced disciplinary penalties between 2011 and 2016 after being found guilty of sexual misbehaviour.

    The government's One Stop Crisis Centre, meanwhile, provided help to underage sexual-abuse victims at 879 schools between 2013 and 2017. In those cases, 168 teachers were identified as attackers.

    The Centre for the Protection of Children's Rights has recently disclosed that most student victims faced threats from their teachers.

    There also have been cases in which teachers offered compensation to the young victims' parents, and in which teachers threatened to file counter complaints.

    Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - 17:53

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    A one-year-old toddler was rescued from suspected drug traffickers, in a series of investigations and arrests made by the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) officers and officers from the Singapore Police Force.

    CNB officers had found out about the boy after arresting a 33-year-old woman for suspected drug trafficking in the vicinity of Kinta Road, near Farrer Park MRT station on Monday, Feb 26.

    About 195g of heroin and 27g of 'Ice' were found in her bag. A search of her hideout in Roberts Lane uncovered 20 'Ecstasy' tablets and a small amount of heroin and 'Ice'.

    During their investigation, officers suspected that the suspect may have a baby as there were messages in her cell phone that made references to one.

    The woman denied this initially but later revealed that she was the caregiver of a one-year old boy, who was believed to be with other suspected drug traffickers.

    Concerned about the well-being and the safety of the toddler, CNB and the Singapore Police Force mounted a follow-up operation the next day (Feb 27).

    One of the suspects, a 51-year-old man, was spotted with the toddler along Joo Chiat Road. The man was arrested after the boy's safety was secured, according to a news release on Wednesday (Feb 28).

    Two women, aged 38 and 41, were also arrested within a hotel room within the same vicinity. About 640g of heroin - enough to feed the addiction of about 305 abusers for a week, said the CNB - was seized from the room.

    Subsequent investigations led to the arrest of a 34-year-old male who had booked the hotel room. He was arrested at his residence in Rivervale Drive and is being investigated for drug trafficking offences.

    All of the arrested are Singaporeans.

    The toddler has since been handed over to the care of the Child Protective Service of the Ministry of Social and Family Development. Efforts are underway to locate the biological mother of the toddler, who is also wanted for drug offences.

    Mr Sng Chern Hong, Director, Communications Division, CNB, said: "This case clearly highlights the adverse consequences of drugs. The toddler was abandoned by his biological mother and left in the care of a suspected drug trafficker. It was fortunate that our officers were successful in locating the toddler and prevented further harm from being caused to him."

    Investigations into the drug activities of all the suspects are ongoing.

    a1admin@sph.com.sg

    Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - 11:30

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    A violent dispute broke out at People's Park Complex in Chinatown on Sunday night (Feb 25), after which a 29-year-old man was arrested for using criminal force against a public servant.

    Stomp contributor Ah Boy contributed a series of short video clips showing the brawl, which he said have been circulating online.

    It is unclear what the fight was about, though it appeared to involve several parties.

    In one clip, a man clad in a black shirt can be seen throwing punches at another guy who had picked up a red plastic chair, then hitting a second guy who tried to stop him.

    In response to queries by Stomp, the police said that they were alerted to a case of dispute at 1 Park Road at 10.44pm.

    "A 29-year-old man was arrested for Criminal Force against Public Servant," added the police.

    Stomp understands that the fight had already stopped and the crowd had broken up when police arrived at the scene.

    A woman was crying and the police were taking her statement.

    When the 29-year-old man saw the police, he tried to flee. Police officers gave chase.

    The suspect then tried to hit a police officer with a glass bottle, but was unsuccessful in doing so. He was subsequently arrested.

    Stomp is unable to ascertain which man in the video is the suspect.

    Police investigations are ongoing.

    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 11:36
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    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 11:54
    Some travellers put off by higher taxes at Changi Airport to fund T5
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    SINGAPORE - Microsoft Corp said on Thursday it will buy solar power from the Sunseap Group in Singapore, the technology company's first renewable energy deal in Asia.

    Microsoft will purchase 100 per cent of the electricity generated from Sunseap's 60 megawatt-peak solar power project for 20 years for its Singapore data operations, the software company said in a statement. Sunseap's project consists of an array of solar panels on hundreds of rooftops across the city-state.

    "This deal is Microsoft's first renewable energy deal in Asia, and is our third international clean energy announcement, following two wind deals announced in Ireland and the Netherlands in 2017," said Christian Belady, general manager, cloud infrastructure strategy and architecture at Microsoft.

    Microsoft said it is on track to exceed its goal of powering 50 per cent of its global datacenter load with renewable energy this year.

    "Once operational, the new solar project will bring Microsoft's total global direct procurement in renewable energy projects to 860 megawatts," Belady said.

    The solar project is under construction and will be operational by the end of the year, the companies said.

    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 12:15
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    SINGAPORE - Singapore's central bank is assessing whether additional regulations are required to protect investors in cryptocurrencies, an official said in a speech on Thursday.

    The city-state - which is aiming to be a hub for financial technology and so-called initial coin offerings in Asia - does not regulate virtual currencies and last year called for the public to exercise "extreme caution" over investment in cryptocurrencies.

    Its central bank does regulate activities involving virtual currencies if they pose specific risks. For example, it imposes anti-money laundering requirements on intermediaries providing virtual currency services.

    "We are assessing if additional regulations are required in the area of investor protection," Ong Chong Tee, deputy managing director (Financial Supervision), Monetary Authority of Singapore said.

    Other countries like South Korea, where trading in cryptocurrencies is more popular, are looking at ways to regulate that activity.

    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 12:05
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    The organiser behind a publicity stunt involving vending machines that dispensed a $50 note in exchange for $3 has been revealed to be local telecommunications service provider Circles.Life.

    The two vending machines, located outside H&M in Somerset and near Chevron House in Raffles Place, drew large crowds during the two-day event on Feb 27 and Feb 28.

    People who inserted $3 into the vending machines received a $50 note, which means that they gained $47 with no strings attached.

    However, the event held at Raffles Place yesterday had to be cut short after police turned up as the organiser did not have a permit, while the second Orchard Road event was cancelled as all cash prizes had been "fully redeemed".

    On Thursday (March 1), Circles.Life revealed via its social media platforms that it was the organiser of the #3DollarBaller campaign.

    An announcement was also made on #3DollarBaller's official Instagram page.

    The marketing stunt was to promote Circles.Life's 'Unlimited Data on Demand' service which is available for $3 per day on top of a subscriber's base plan.

    This add-on service is one of several new services announced by the telco today.

    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 13:51
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    The father of a woman fatally stabbed by a jaded ex-lover who then jumped to his death from her 10th-floor flat, insisted that his daughter did not have affairs with married men. 

    The harrowing incident happened at Block 520A, Tampines Central 8, on May 29, 2017.

    Safety supervisor Chng Hong Nam, 49, a married father-of-three, stabbed sales telemarketer Serinn Tan Bee Leng, 46, in her chest and abdomen, killing her. 

    Ms Tan’s body sported many stab wounds, including three fatal injuries on her chest, a 6cm-long laceration on her arm, and another stab wound on her abdomen.

    The injuries inflicted on Ms Tan was so severe, that her bones and small intestine were exposed. 

    In addition to the knife wounds, Ms Tan also bore bruises, suggesting that she had been bound by cable ties, which were recovered at the foot of the block along with Mr Chng’s body. 

    The court heard that the two had started having an affair back in 2013.

    However, this was later discovered by Mr Chng’s wife, who told her husband to sever all ties with Ms Tan.

    Mr Chng’s wife also confronted Ms Tan over the affair at the latter’s flat, but she denied the allegations. 

    According to The Straits Times, after the two ended their affair, Ms Tan, a divorcee with a 16-year-old son, moved on to a new romantic interest — her supervisor at work, who coincidentally, is also married. 

    Mr Chng persistently called Ms Tan to ask for a meeting, but each time, she would come up with excuses to avoid him.

    She finally gave in and the two met at her home. 

    After killing Ms Tan, Mr Chng sent a text message to his wife. 

    In the message, he thanked her for staying by his side over 20 years and acknowledged that he had hurt her with his infidelity. 

    He told her that her suffering would end soon. 

    After sending the messages, he leapt from the flat and plunged to his death. 

    Ms Tan’s father, Mr Chen Wei Sheng, 72, told Lianhe Wanbao that his daughter had divorced from her ex-husband 10 years ago.

    Ms Tan and her son then moved in with her parents. 

    On March 2017, her daughter finally got the keys to her new flat, but barely two months later, she was stabbed to death.

    Mr Tan said that he was a yong tau foo hawker by trade, and his daughter had been very filial, asking him to retire early, while she supported the family financially. 

    The elderly man choked as he recalled the moment he received a call telling him that his daughter had died.

    Mr Tan said that he felt that he had failed his duties as a father:

    “I wasn’t at the scene to shout out her name and left her body lying alone in a pool of blood.

    “As a father, I feel ashamed.”

    Ms Tan’s son who is now in secondary school is currently staying with his grandparents. 

    Mr Tan said that his grandson and his daughter slept in the same room every night, and the boy still misses his mother. 

    He also vehemently denied that his daughter had affairs with married men, and pointed out that it had all been wishful thinking on Mr Chng’s part.

    Mr Tan revealed that his daughter had switched jobs three times just to avoid Mr Chng, and made up lies about her being attached so he would back off.

    She even chose to work in the isolated Tuas area so she could avoid him, said Mr Tan.

    Mr Tan insisted that his daughter had never spoken about Mr Chng, or he would have warned her about him. 

    He said that based on his understanding, Mr Chng had visited his daughter after finding out that she would be going to Pakistan.

    Although Ms Tan told him that she was not free, Mr Chng still showed up at her door.

    He then brutalised and killed her.

    Despite the attacks, Mr Tan said his daughter’s will to live was strong and cited that she had used her arms to block the stabs, thus explaining the injuries on her arm. 

    He added that the flat had been bought by his daughter using her own money, and she had not gotten an ounce of help from Mr Chng.

    Hence, he does not believe that his daughter had been in an affair with Mr Chng.

    He lamented:

    “She is innocent. If anyone says she is his mistress, that is slander.”

    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 15:04
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    Thursday, March 1, 2018 - 15:47
    No increase in ministerial salaries, review after 5 years or when it becomes necessary: DPM Teo
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    Data analytics has revolutionised how companies approach human resource issues, giving them new tools to predict - and improve - outcomes. Saturday's Brunch in The Business Times Weekend looks at how Big Data has transformed HR practices in hiring, staff management, talent retention and supervision. We also unveil what some banks are doing with their vast vaults of employee information, and explore the implications for privacy.

    In The Raffles Conversation, venture capitalist turned green tech advocate Peggy Liu tells BT why she chose to leave corporate success for non-profit advocacy, and how she is hoping to turn China, one of the world's biggest polluters, green.

    Disrupted, meanwhile, finds a green solution at a music festival in New Zealand - a Kiwi-made water bottle made entirely of plant material that could replace plastic and revolutionise manufacturing.

    In our Investing section, Fundsupermart.com's Fund Watch column follows up on rising yields, highlighting a few funds that should be able to mitigate the full extent of rising yields or even benefit from them. When markets turn unpredictable is when you need to make sure you have the right multi-asset manager. CFA Singapore Insights gives some pointers on how to tell the good manager from the bad.

    Our Steering Column writer reviews the new Mercedes-Benz CLS 450 and finds it a cut above.

    And our newly-wed Offbeat columnist ponders the rules of angbao-giving: are we all just making it up as we go along?

    To subscribe, visit bt.sg/subscribe

     

    Friday, March 2, 2018 - 18:27
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    A pinhole camera was found in a handicapped toilet in Nanyang Technological University (NTU) on Mar 1.

    The police said that they received "a call for assistance on a case of insulting the modesty of women in Nanyang Drive" at 5.03pm on Thursday (Mar 1), reports The Straits Times.

    According to Lianhe Wanbao, the camera was supposedly hidden in a plastic hook that was mounted on the side of the door facing the toilet bowl.

    It is understood that the camera was found by a female printing service contractor.

    Inside the camera, an SD memory card was found but it is unclear if any videos or photos were inside.

    A cleaner at the school told Wanbao that a woman rushed up to him on Thursday saying that someone had installed a pinhole camera in the toilet.

    She had reportedly noticed the hook on the door of the toilet, which had not been there before.

    She also noted that the hook, which had a freshener pack hanging on it, was placed in a relatively low position, just above the air vents on the door.

    She said that it was positioned at the same level as the toilet bowl.

    Feeling it was unusual and after some checking, she asked for someone to call the police.

    Police investigations are ongoing.

    Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 19:43
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