The Associated Press, April 2, 1998

Singapore Caning Victim Arrested

WINTER PARK, Fla. (AP) -- The young man who was caned in Singapore four years ago for allegedly vandalizing cars has been arrested in Florida on drug charges.

Michael Fay, 22, was arrested at his apartment Tuesday by a deputy responding to neighbors' complaints about loud music.

Fay, a student at Valencia Community College, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and less than 20 grams of marijuana. He was released Wednesday after posting $500 bond.

``I'm not going to lie to anybody. It was my mistake. I was smoking marijuana,'' Fay said later.

In May 1994, Fay was flogged four strokes with a rattan cane on his bare buttocks for a vandalism conviction in Singapore, provoking outrage in this country.

The nation's authoritarian government has been widely criticized for curbing civil liberties. Fay, who had been living in Singapore with his mother and stepfather, said he was beaten into confessing to a crime he didn't commit.

After returning to the United States, Fay was suffered burns to his hands and face in September 1994, and admitted he was burned while sniffing butane, a fuel used in cigarette lighters. He then went into drug rehabilitation for a butane habit.

Return to Newsroom Index or to Table of Contents.