SINGAPORE: Actor Anthony Joseph Anak Hermas Rajiman, better known as Tony Eusoff, was sentenced to eight months in jail on Thursday (Apr 21) after pleading guilty to drug possession.
Eusoff, who is Malaysian, was caught with 4.56 grams of cannabis mixture on Mar 12 this year while travelling to Singapore to finish shooting Mediacorp TV series The Hush.
Before the bus arrived at Tuas Checkpoint, Eusoff, 38, removed the drugs from his bag and hid the packet behind the last row of seats on the bus, intending to retrieve the drugs after clearing immigration.
But authorities found the drugs while conducting a routine check on the bus. Eusoff admitted the drugs were his after being taken to the Central Narcotics Bureau’s office at the Checkpoint for investigations.
Eusoff’s lawyer Abraham Vergis urged the court to impose a jail term of six to eight months – lower than the usual eight to 10 months in similar cases. He cited the small amount of drugs involved, which he said were for Eusoff’s own consumption.
Pointing to Eusoff’s significant contributions to the arts scenes on both sides of the causeway, Mr Vergis called his client “a cultural asset”. Other personalities, including local actor Neo Swee Lin, and founder of local theatre group W!ld Rice Ivan Heng, have come forward to attest to Eusoff’s “accomplishments, value and contributions”, Mr Vergis said.
Eusoff has also used his time, talents and public persona to raise awareness for social causes in Malaysia, the lawyer added.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Randeep Singh said the prosecution did not dispute any of Eusoff’s accomplishments and contributions to the arts but reminded the court that deterrence should remain a key sentencing consideration.
Eusoff could have been jailed up to 10 years and/or fined up to S$20,000 for possession of cannabis, a controlled drug.