A MEXICAN TOURIST was jailed for ten days in Singapore after he was found guilty of attacking a taxi driver who took him and his wife to the wrong hotel.
Jonathan Nunez Gonzalez (35) and his wife hailed Lee Eng Kuan’s (51) taxi at 3:40am on January 15 and told him to take them to the Westin Hotel. But Mr Lee thought they meant the Stamford Hotel – which was previously known as the Westin Stamford Hotel – rather than the Westin Singapore (above), near to the Marina Bay Financial Centre.
On arrival at the wrong hotel, Gonzalez’s wife used a map on her smartphone to guide the taxi driver to the right destination. She and Mr Lee started to argue, at which point her husband opened the driver’s door and slapped him. Mr Gonzalez then punched the taxi driver in the chest, causing him to fall backwards to the ground.
Mr Lee was treated for minor injuries to his face and was given three days medical leave.
Anand Nalachandran, defence lawyer for Mr Gonzalez, said his client had clashed with Mr Lee because he suspected: “The taxi driver was exploiting his unfamiliarity with the locality to inflate the fare”.
Mr Nalachandran said his client admitted losing control of his emotions and had already paid $2,000 to Mr Lee as compensation for his, “Momentary lapse of judgement”.
The court was told Mr Gonzalez had since lost his job as a chief strategy officer for the Malaysian company he worked for.