S$127,380.76 raised on fifth day of TOC editor-in-chief’s crowdfunding campaign for defamation damages – The Online Citizen Asia

by crypto journalist

TOC editor-in-chief Terry Xu has raised S$127,380.76 in donations through his crowdfunding campaign as of 11.59 pm, Sunday (5 Sep) for damages from the defamation suit filed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

The amount, contributed by 1,316 people, is 60.66 per cent of the S$210,000 awarded to the Prime Minister by the High Court.

The court on 1 Sep awarded S$210,000 in damages to PM Lee in his civil libel lawsuit against Mr Xu.

The S$210,000 comprises S$160,000 in general damages and S$50,000 in aggravated damages.

The writer of the article was separately sued by PM Lee. Mr Xu was not named as a defendant in the separate lawsuit.

For the suit against the writer of the article titled “PM Lee’s wife, Ho Ching weirdly shares article on cutting ties with family members“, Justice Audrey Lim awarded S$160,000 in general damages to PM Lee.

However, Justice Lim ruled that PM Lee should not be doubly compensated as the defamation pertained to the same article.

Thus, the judge said both Mr Xu and the writer of the article should be held “jointly and severally liable” for damages amounting to S$160,000.

This means that PM Lee can claim only S$160,000 from the both.

Mr Xu is also required to pay S$50,000 in aggravated damages to PM Lee.

PM Lee’s lawyers had previously stated in their closing submissions for the defamation suit against Mr Xu that damages awarded in previous defamation cases involving government ministers in Singapore fell within the range of S$100,000 to S$400,000.

Legal costs and fees pertaining to the suit will be determined at a later date.

In his Facebook post on Friday (3 Sep), Mr Xu said that he has received messages from people “stating how they are giving up certain priorities in their life in order to contribute to the fundraising, and how they took time off their busy schedule just to deposit the money to my account”.

“I thank these people from the bottom of my heart for their sacrifices to contribute. What may seem little to some, is a significant sum to them, especially when it is an exchange of their time and sweat,” he added.

Mr Xu in a Facebook post earlier on Wednesday said that he is using activist Roy Yi Ling Ngerng’s fundraising tracking system “as it is more transparent and clear to the donors”.

“I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all those who have donated and pledged to do so. And also thank you for all the encouraging and supportive messages that have been sent so far.

“My view on the defamation suits, including those before mine, is that Singapore politicians have to realise the era of intimidation through the use of lawsuits and bankrupting their opponents is over,” said Mr Xu.

In his Facebook post on Sunday, Mr Xu said that “no amount is too small to be significant”.

“It is the thought and show of solidarity that matters. And also be assured that I appreciate each and every donations just as much.

“And also note that while this is a fundraising to pay off damages to the Singapore Prime Minister, you can also treat this as a charity exercise as he will be donating the full sum to charity,” he said.

The donation amounts range from S$0.01 to S$3,838.

Those keen on contributing to the fundraiser can donate through the following channels.

DBS Current Account Number – 1206943287
Paynow/PayPal : +65 91781031
PayPal – [email protected]

Cheque payments can be addressed to “Xu Yuanchen”.

For those who wish to drop cash instead of making a transfer, you can drop the amount at 20 Maxwell Rd, #09-17 Maxwell House, Singapore 069113.

While Mr Xu will not be present at the office, the receptionist at the office will pass you a cash receipt upon acceptance. The amount will then be passed over to him.

Please note the opening hours of 3pm to 6pm on Tuesday and Thursday only. More information is available here.

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