Infamous Singapore anti-mask ‘MBS Lady’ jailed 16 weeks

Singapore — A Singaporean woman who gained notoriety for her persistent refusal to don face masks was finally sentenced today to 16 weeks in jail.

Retired navy Maj. Phoon Chiu Yoke, 54, pleaded guilty to nine counts of violating COVID-19 laws in court today, months after a video of her refusing to mask up at the Marina Bay Sands resort went viral. 

Singaporeans subsequently filmed her maskless mischief in other public places such as a supermarket and Clarke Quay.

Phoon has been in custody since July 24, and her sentencing will be backdated to then, according to reports. She was also charged with violating her hotel quarantine at MBS by stepping out of her room to do various things like visiting the infinity pool. 

Phoon has been violating COVID-19 measures from as early as May 2020, when she failed to wear a mask at the Newton Food Center. After being charged for that offense, she fled to the United Kingdom and had to enter hotel quarantine when she returned to Singapore the following month. 

From December to May, she was spotted unmasked outside the State Courts, the Marina Bay Sands, aka MBS, incident in May, and at the Mandarin Orchard Singapore hotel in June.

In May, Phoon was recorded telling off social distancing monitors trying to make her put on a mask to queue outside a Toast Box eatery, demanding to see their “badge.” Ever since then, Phoon has been dubbed the “MBS Lady.” 

“I said to you, if you have no badge, you don’t speak to me. You have no right to ask me to do anything,” she said.

Reporting by Sean Tyler Chan

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