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Night out with singerBy Elena Chong03 March 2010Dr Ionescu (left) had been drinking the night before the accident, according to Ms. Jeong (right).Former Romanian diplomat Silviu Ionescu, who is linked to the hit-and-run accident at Bukit Panjang last December, invited a Korean opera singer and voice teacher out 10 days after meeting her at a concert.The 49-year-old then charge d’Affaires of the Romanian Embassy here and Ms. Jeong Ae Ree, 40, went to a few places including Shangri-La Hotel where he had some white wine on Dec 14. The couple then adjourned to Clarke Quay and a KTV lounge at Peace Centre, Selegie Road, for a birthday party.Taking the stand on Wednesday as the first witness at a coroner’s inquiry into the death of Malaysian assistant manager Tong Kok Wai, 30, a hit-and-run victim, Ms. Jeong said Dr Ionescu picked her up from her Hillcrest Arcadia home in a black Audi, which was driven by his chauffeur. After a few glasses of white wine, Dr Ionescu invited her to a birthday party elsewhere. Ms. Jeung said the driver took them to a condominium where the diplomat told her he lived there. The driver removed the State flag from the car before Dr Ionescu took over the wheel.She said they next went to Clarke Quay where they watched belly dancing outside a Turkish restaurant. Dr Ionescu had two shots of tequila, she said. At about midnight, they left for Legend Palace KTV and joined a group of people in a room. She said at the KTV, he had a few glasses of a drink, probably a mixture of coke and alcohol spirits. As she was not well, she told him repeatedly she wanted to go home. He finally took her home at about 2am.Ms. Jeong said at around 8am, she woke up to find two missed calls from Dr Ionescu at 3.50am. She sent him a text message. He said he wanted to meet her the next day at about 1pm. They met at her condominium lobby, where, for reasons unknown, he tried to explain he was only drinking juices and coke the night before and nothing else.‘He even showed me some medications to prove that he is diabetic. I do not know the reason for his explanations,’ she added. Footages from CCTV taken at Shangri-La Hotel and Legend Palace were shown in court. The inquiry continues.
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