S'pore's Most Wanted, 14 of them
THE husband of the woman whose decapitated body was found in Whampoa River is now wanted - not just in Singapore, but also around the globe.
The man, Harvinder Singh, 34, entered the Wanted Persons list on international police organisation Interpol two weeks ago.
He is one of six foreigners wanted by Singapore.
Another is Tunisian national Guiga Lyes Ben Laroussi, the alleged co-leader of a drug ring, who jumped bail after being charged with drug trafficking in 2005.
There are also 14 Singaporeans who have red notices against their names on Interpol's website.
This means that the authorities are seeking their location and arrest "with a view to extradition or similar lawful action" if they are caught.
While nine of the 14 Singaporeans are wanted here for crimes committed locally, the other five are being hunted by nations farther from Singapore's shores.
Clarence Lee Kok Leong, 40, is wanted by Denmark for the misappropriation of funds and fraud; Ow Song Suah, 52, is wanted by the Czech Republic for fraud, and Andrew Ang, 38, is wanted by the United States for wire fraud.
Their whereabouts are currently unknown.
The Singaporeans wanted here include David Rasif, a rogue lawyer who ran off with $11.3 million of his clients' money in 2006, and Mark Koh Kian Tiong, 35, a former Criminal Investigation Department detective wanted for fraud.
Some, like former bank executive Siak Lai Chun, have been on the list for almost two decades.
Siak allegedly stole $18.7 million from her bank using fake cashiers' orders, fleeing after her scam was exposed in December 1997.
Singapore has extradition treaties with more than 50 Commonwealth countries.
This means that if a person wanted by Singapore is apprehended or detained in any of those countries, an extradition order can be made to send them back here, and vice versa.
The treaties are legally binding, but there are conditions, said criminal lawyer Shashi Nathan from KhattarWong.
"It must be a similar offence in both countries, and punishments must be similar," he said, adding that the holding country's court must also be satisfied that the accused's life will not be in danger.
Lawyer Amolat Singh from Amolat and Partners said that the beauty of criminal cases is that there is no time limit on them.
"Even if those on the list are caught 20 or 30 years later, they can still be prosecuted, and get due punishment for their crimes," he said.
He added that there is always a chance that those in hiding may be caught, as they may grow complacent, thinking that the "trail has grown cold".
He added that there are also those who surrender themselves, because they want to visit a dying parent, or because not being able to lead a normal life "eats (away) at them".