Thank you, Oliver Fricker.

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Comments (59)
  1. Ordinary Singaporean says:

    Oliver Fricker should be given a cultural medallion award, period.

    1. lolly says:

      He and his accomplice should be caned.
      They may be foreigners but in the eyes
      of the law, there is no reason for them to be
      excused. Vandalism is a serious offence.

    2. Mark says:


    3. paul says:

      Nah, a fine will do. SMRT should be caned.

    4. Dacrula says:

      LOL! Agree with Paul. The SMRT lack of security, they can't blame Oliver Fricker, if they tighten their security, there won't be this incident happened

    5. JRT says:

      come on… vandalism is NOT a serious offence. no one, foreigners or otherwise should be made to suffer this archaic (to say the least) punishment over some paint work.

    6. balance says:

      i thought his piece of art is beautiful. vandalism is against the law and fricker should be punished but i think that they should do away with the cane. a little to harsh on someone who makes us realise the big security mistake.

    7. frank says:

      Its good you are still in school because you still have lots to learn.

  2. dom the clown says:

    Agree with most of what is written here. But still can help laughing about it.


    They hit it on the head

    1. George says:

      The punishment that would be meted out to Fricker would take into account the following AGGRAVATING FACTORS:

      1. He did it in the middle of some big security conference involving very senior people of the region and the US, etc.

      What was lost on the govt was not only its face but also that he has actually done us a great favour by pointing out a very weak link in our security set up. I would not rule out that there may be others like him and I hope others would have the courage to point this out in their own unique, selfless (a possible jail term and caning is no joke) and point blank ways! So complacent asses in the govt and big public organisations need to be kicked, and long overdue too!

      One can legitimately doubt if any self audit/checks by the organsiations concerned would have revealed/highlighted the lapse. It's like a writer attempting to check his own work for errors – he won't see it even if he does it a hundred times because of the tendency for our minds for self-deception.

  3. silly says:

    If Oliver Fricker is to be given a jail term and caning; SMRT should be taken to task MORE for not taking a serious view of the responsibility for passengers' safety in face of terrorism round the world. What is the point of talking about national security and then you see a picture of the "fence" of SMRT depot in today's ST ?? Wah……..this was like Mas Selamat escape esp the type of fence used to keep undesirables in/out.

    1. Nathan says:

      what can u say? in both the mas selamat and SMRT case, no heads rolled. the blame was placed squarely on mas selamat and oliver fricker

    2. coach gigi says:

      @silly: i agree with you. imagine if someone can go through their security and planted the bomb! which i think would take so much time compared to an elaborated vandal.

    3. coach gigi says:

      that's "would not" take so much time…

  4. Yueheng says:

    I have written a response to this article here: http://youareheng.blogspot.com/2010/06/should-we-

    1. Chris Ong says:

      Dear Yueheng:

      I've read your response to my article. A well-argued and sound criticism, I must say. Thank you for reading the article and the excellent feedback!

      Chris Ong

  5. lolly says:

    Vandalism is a serious offence. Action
    should be taken against Oliver and Lloyd.

    1. guest says:

      U bet, caned across their sorry asses!

  6. Apple 4G says:

    Great one Yueheng. Great one as well Dom. Btw any idea who that girl is in dotseng. She works in my building, pretty stuck up.

  7. Yueheng says:


    Thank you for your response. I enjoyed reading your thought-provoking article and hope to read more in the future! :)

  8. sorry am anal says:

    "He may have to face a fine or possibly a short jail span, but capital punishment is a very harsh verdict " — >CORPORAL , not capital, punishment.

    1. Chris Ong says:

      Thanks for pointing out that glaring error — it has been corrected as of 10.02pm, 9th June.


  9. Kirsten says:

    Corporal punishment is far too much for a petty offense like graffiti. They are probably wanting to punish him because he made them lose face, when really they should have been grateful to have been shown the literal holes in their security!

  10. TKO says:

    Whether he is a foreigner or not shouldn't factor in so much. I am curious as to why his nationality almost excuses his crime, in the eyes of many. Ignorance of the law is not a reasonable defense. A different cultural standard isn't either.

    What if it were a local person who committed the deed? Would he or she be so similarly exalted?

    Although Fricker did something that has its merits, he also broke the law. At the very least, he has to be fined. The social/artistic angle of his act is a factor but the law should be respected too.

    What would happen if lots of people decided to frivolously engage in 'tagging' under the premise of 'exposing' security flaws? It seems to open the door to many problems. Although it may be a door that has to be opened. A free society will always face such issues. Furthermore, who bears the costs of cleaning up such graffiti? Knowing SMRT, they would probably pass the costs onto consumers in the form of higher fares.

    It's an issue of freedom of expression at a societal level that needs to be discussed but vandalism in general should not be condoned. What is needed is more discussion about such artistic actions in general. This is an issue facing many countries with regards to street art.

    1. caretakerdc says:

      At the same time Micheal Fay was tried, a Secondary Two student at Chang Kat Changi set fire to the school because he was made at a teacher. He destroyed the computer room and all of the schools sports equipment. The government only re;lace the items on an annual budget. My son was among the four years of students who did not receive computer education because of his action. He receive probation for "Mischief". Michael Fay was jailed and caned for applying spray paint to a car which was removed with cleaning compounds.

    2. amicus says:

      There is an even more gross example of double standards than you mention, caretakerdc. Some time after Michael Fay was jailed and caned for spray-painting a car another act of vandalism occurred in the underground car park of one of our major private hospitals. One of the senior doctors who worked in the hospital was captured on cctv ripping the aerial out of the car belonging to another senior doctor against whom he had a grudge. As I say it was all captured on cctv, an open and shut case of sheer vandalism. The culprit was charged and tried. He was given a fine! No custodial prison sentence and no caning although the physical damage caused by his vandalism was considerably greater than that caused by some spray-paint. If this is not a double standard then I do not know what is.

  11. Tan Ah Kow says:

    Fricker should be jailed and caned. Breaking and entering followed by vandalism is not laughing matter. I say his butt should be caned to the consistency of Swiss cheese.

    That said, please give him chocolates and a bouquet of roses after the caning. He basically exposed a glaring weakness in the security measures at SMRT's depots.

    SMRT totally deserves all the brickbats that they're getting…. if anything, they got off lightly. If Fricker had been a terrorist with a time bomb, the consequences would have been far more severe than just embarassment for SMRT.

    1. i agree with this statement. i think if fricker had been a terorist with a time bomb, they’d be making the same argument that he “helped expose the security loopholes”

  12. Jimmy Hendricks says:

    Well written, crisp and to the point. Thank you KRC for providing us all with a insightful and also a humorous vantage provided by many others here such as the BP. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

  13. dee dee forum says:

    cut the crap

    free fricker!

  14. sofia says:

    All the news reports never mentioned how the police came about finding the culprits
    were the swiss guy and the briton guy.

    How did the police able to find out it was these two guys who spray painted the MRT depot?
    Even via camera, how did they find out the names of these guys?
    i'm curious.

    1. hello says:

      by cell phone tracking… Singapore is a police state.. ;-) You did not know that?

    2. caretakerdc says:

      If similar to the Michael Fay case, they confessed.

  15. coach gigi says:

    this should be a wake-up call for singapore's security system. it's useless to have all the cameras around when it is not being checked or reviewed daily. just the fact that someone can enter the MRT depot and made this "artistic" vandal… is scary! Why? i'm sure the spray painting activity wasn't done in few minutes' time, so just imagine what if a terrorist was able to enter the MRT depot and planted a bomb instead (if it's a wireless activated device, then someone could just glue it under the train… which could probably take 5mins)!?!

    Being able to pass by the security is a much bigger issue than the vandalism. I think if Mr Fricker is given such punishments & fine, then someone who is responsible from SMRT's side should be fined twice!

  16. Guest says:

    You guys are adorable. If your house is broken into, the thief showed you the weakness of your house, and should you thank him?
    Was Fricker intent to show us the weakness of our SMRT security system?
    Did he not do it for the thrill and adrenaline of achieving something that is illegal?
    Graffiti is like a form of signature to the artist, in this case, he derives satisfaction from seeing his big name on OUR public transport, he is probably think " hell ya, i own it!"

  17. Guest2 says:

    Did Fricker actually say his intention was to point out security lapses? In any case, he definitely deserves to be punished – but SMRT deserves to be punished even more heavily, because they are responsible for the safety of the commuters. The train station cannot be compared to a private house. It's a public system people pay to use. Many lives are at stake. So yeah, SMRT is completely at fault (especially since the ease at which it was done is… ridiculous)

  18. Jasper says:

    Oliver Fricker is a LEGEND!!!! Just give him a fine. He showed you all how easy it would be for a terrorist, which he is not. Go after the real crims (romanians and muslims)

  19. Octus says:

    A fine will not suffice. My personal opinion, Slap on a jail term OR caning but not both. I do think to punish him with both punishments will be a bit severe, considering that SMRT is equally culpable. The fact that Indonesian terrorists had planned to target SG MRTs and the ease of the way Fricker & his accomplice made their way into the compound suggest that SMRT top management has been sleeping on the job. In normal times, they know how to collect their high pay, in dire times, they must answer for it and not make some middle management staff the scapegoat!

  20. Claudio says:

    Sorry guys, but a guy violated the law, without any indication that he did so to warn about security flaws. This does not make him a "legend", Jasper. As an anonymous guest pointed out, "Did he not do it for the thrill and adrenaline of achieving something that is illegal?". Yes indeed he did. Had the guy not been a "Swiss business consultant", would we be talking about this? How on Earth can you believe his action is worthy of praise? Replace Mr. Fricker with a Tamil bricklayer, and tell me you would praise him.


    Side note: Singapore is one of the few 'world capitals' in which somebody can expect corporal punishment for vandalism. While I do not necessarily agree on the validity of corporal punishment, it is hard to believe that the culprit did not consider this very likely outcome of his action. Maybe caning is good publicity, in a stagnating market.

  21. frank says:

    So Christopher, if someone comes and knifes you in the gut, I would expect you to thank him for showing how vulnerable you are?

    Or when a woman is raped by an assailant, perhaps the woman's mother should thank the rapist for proving how the daughter invites such dangers?!

    OH, PLEASE! Grow up!

    Its one thing to take SMRT to task, its another to legitimize and encourage acts of crime with a false veil of good.

  22. candy says:

    超人 He is superman.

  23. amicus says:

    This is the second major security gaffe within the last 18 months. Firstly an alleged terrorist escapes through the toilet window of a high security detention centre, and now two foreigners manage to evade so-called security measures and manage to enter a highly sensitive MRT depot undetected. Security is the brief of the Home Affairs Minister, and this is two serious security lapses in under two years. What will it take in the way of major security disasters before the Home Affairs Minister accepts responsibility for this incompetence and has the decency to fall on his own sword by resigning? If there was even remote semblance of an Opposition in Parliament there would be a no-confidence vote against the Home Affairs Minister in Parliament. But please don't hold your breath waiting for this to happen!

  24. blnfo says:

    Does anyone know how this will affect YOG? Or does it have nothing to do with it?

  25. Fairplay says:

    Oliver Fricker'sdeliberate vandalism of the mrt train deserve the sentence no less than that of Michael Fay.
    SMRT SLEEPING ON THE JOB for the lapse of security is even worse.They did not even know until the posting of the video on you tube,whilst the culprits have already gone to Hong Kong.
    If it is a terrorist act, thousands of Singaporeans would have been dead.
    In most developed countries,the top management would take the rap,apologised and resigned.Not in Singapore.The auothorities will only harp on repeating the sentence of a wake up call,be it mas selamat,orchard road flooding,wanted criminals absconding etc.One day we will not have wake up call but just face up to the realities.
    In all fairness the overpaid management team together with the securities dept. should come forward and voluntarily forgo their annual bonuses or/and even take a pay cut to redeem their slipshod mistake.
    The money saved can be used for the beefing up the security or given to approved charities.

  26. Singapore proves once again what a third world country it is in sentencing Oliver Fricker to being brutally FLOGGED. This cruel and inhumane punishment is a homo erotic sadomasochistic ritual whereby the male is stripped naked and tied up, as one would tie an animal to a trestle and bound to it,
    a homosexual or sadistic male guard is trained and paid to deliberately inflict suffering and uses a wooden stick soaked in chemicals to brutally beat the male over and over and over again until he is injured scarred and bleeding, while other salivating male guards and a doctor ( I use the term loosely) enjoy the whole spectacle until the victim is mutilated needing medical attention and or hospitalization. This discriminating archaic treatment applies only to males (females are not equal undre the law) has no place in the modern civilized world. Human rights organizations have long condemned this and United Nations prohibits cruel and inhuman punishement,.but Singapore ignores international law and makes a mockery out of the rule of law itself. The only hope of stopping this is if international companys and corporations put the pricetag of human rights on their commerce. Disgusting, Degrading, and Dehumanizing! When will this madness end?

    1. guest says:

      Hey-Fricker deserves the rotan across his bare ass, should of got all 8! And, you are the one who thinks its sadomasochistic-wellit's not-its firm punishment for the creep!

    2. Butterflye2020 says:

      The state of Singapore sanctions this sick ceremoney where sadists and perverted homos assault naked men that are shackeled and tied up. This 17th century barbarism is the stuff that western S/M subculture is patterned after, and has no place in any modern civilised society. If you think this violence is OK perhaps you would enjoy beating naked mens buttocks; you may seek employment at the sadistic Singapore Prisons as they are looking for people just like you.

    3. guest says:

      If I was strong enough and in need of a job-sure I'd apply! Why not. It is a job!

  27. Madnesst says:

    Oliver is not 3 year old kid.

    He is matured enough to know what is right and what is wrong.

    He came to a foreign land, has every intention to make a fool out of Singapore, disrespect the law and public property or private property and thinks he can get away with it (Well his friend did, he better not step into this country again.)

    He deserved to be punished in a way he will remember for life.

    Can a lenient punishment work? No, He is not a first time offender. He is scum who has a criminal mindset. Serve him right.

  28. swisstrading says:

    hey writers haters could you my explain

    why @ war u can kill people whitout be judged?

    stay on you clean and grey home ,let us the world!

  29. Kelvin Teo says:

    Actually the rails of Brisbane and even the train are decorated with grafitti…

    When I have take enough shots I will upload on a photo album

  30. jake craig says:

    So, Fricker got freed for good behvior and flew home on 11-15-10! Sure hope he left with 3 burning welts and scars on his Swiss ass! He had better have been caned or it is a disgrace, Singaporians would have their brown asses in a singapore sling!

  31. Ben says:

    It actually looks quite pretty. Still a wrongful act nonetheless but if vandalism could not be avoided I’d say this is as nice an outcome as you can get.

  32. man. this entire comment section is filled with shills. fricker is a criminal. he should receive the same sentence as anyone else in singapore. it’s an insult to the singaporian people to let him off the hook. turn the tables around. if a yellow, or brown criminal comited a crime in europe, would they ever be given a lesser sentence? not in a million years. security loophole? the only security loophole i see here is letting foreign criminals into the country, especially white guys like fricker, who think theyre above the law. singapore used to be a british colony. it looks like it still is. if fricker was black, and working class, he would have been caned. no questions asked. singapore does have some screwed up laws, and the only reason why they havent changed is because the laws only apply to working class Asians. if rich white people got the same punishment as everyone else, you’d see these laws abolished overnight.

  33. seo wook kim says:

    nice to see that the singapore regime is taking this as an opportunity to step up their fascism on society. oh no, a tagger broke into the train yard, now we should just make singapore even more authoritarian than it already is. also, i love how there is zero outcry about white western foreigners breaking the law in sg. i remember a while back there was a huge outcry of Chinese nationals breaking the rules in sg, but as usual the singaporians are silent when white westerners break all the laws. same old colonial mentality.

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