Soldiers escape a Singapore caning

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The Independent Online
Two British soldiers facing the cane in Singapore after being accused of theft have been released into British military custody, the Ministry of Defence confirmed last night.

Royal Marine Richard Britten, 22, and John King, 20, a craftsman with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, will be flown back to the UK tomorrow to be dealt with by British military authorities, an MoD spokesman said.

They were facing at least 12 strokes and three years in jail in Singapore if convicted of charges that they robbed a taxi driver of pounds 19 during shore leave from their Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship Sir Galahad on 3 May.

King, from Alford, Aberdeenshire, and Britten, from Plymouth, are likely to face a court martial in the UK, but they will be relieved they no longer have to face justice in Singapore.