Swiss train vandal released from Singapore prison: embassy

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A Swiss expatriate who was jailed and caned for spray-painting a Singapore metro train has flown home after serving his sentence, the Swiss embassy said Tuesday.

Oliver Fricker, a 32-year-old software consultant, was released from Changi Prison on Monday and quickly took a flight back to Switzerland, the embassy's deputy head of mission Peter Zimmerli told AFP.

Fricker was jailed in June for vandalism and trespass, and a high court judge in August extended his sentence from five to seven months following appeals from state prosecutors who felt the original jail term was lenient.

He was also ordered to be whipped three times with a wooden cane, a form of punishment applicable to vandalism and other offences including rape.

Prosecutors said Fricker broke into a train depot in May and spray-painted two carriages together with a 29-year-old Briton, Lloyd Dane Alexander, who is still wanted in Singapore after fleeing the city-state.

The pair spray-painted the words "McKoy" and "Banos" -- the signatures of two train vandals whose elaborate works are celebrated in YouTube videos and websites that regard graffiti as an art form.

Fricker was released for good behaviour after five months in prison, sources familiar with Singapore's penal system told AFP.

© 2010 AFP

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