When I travelled in Europe by train, I saw plenty of graffiti. There even graffiti in the train I was travelling on. In Singapore, graffiti is not a form of art but seen as vandalism. Swiss national Fricker is a vandal not an artist. He is a criminal. Fricker is expected to plead guilty to all charges on Thursday[Link].
"Notwithstanding the provisions of any other written law, it is an offence under the Act to commit any act of vandalism, attempt to do any such act, or cause any such act to be done. Upon conviction, the penalty is a fine not exceeding S$2,000 or imprisonment not exceeding three years, and also corporal punishment of not less than three strokes and not more than eight strokes of the cane." - Singapore Vandalism Act [Wikipedia Link]
If he is a Singaporean, he will probably get 2-3 years jail and caning will be a certainty. Breaking into a restricted compound is considered a very serious crime in Singapore. I support the idea of applying the same laws and justice to everyone on this island. However, giving Friker the same sentence as a Singaporean will definitely result in hue and outrage in his home country of Switzerland ....they will be quite stunned if Fricker is given a jail sentence and caning for graffiti.
Many Singaporeans and netizens are watching this case closely to see what kind of sentence Fricker will get. Given the Michael Fay case [Link]which put the spotlight on the punishment for certain crimes in Singapore, they will have to be prepared for some attention from the international media if Fricker is given a sentence that a Singaporean would be expected to receive for the same crime.
If our laws and punishment for breaking them are just and well thought out, the govt should be confident it can get the rest of the world to see things our way. They will have difficulty only if our system imposes unnecessarily brutal punishment that goes against the universal sense of justice .....