Online hate has become increasingly prevalent in our digital age.
With a single tap on a screen, expressing disdain for someone, especially if they’re a public figure or influencer, has never been simpler.
Typically, this is how keyboard warriors voice their displeasure with an influencer’s actions.
It seems as though online hate is not the only act of resentment we have to be wary of.
While real-life celebrity feuds are relatively uncommon, one of Singapore’s influencers recently was embroiled in such a controversy.
Here’s what happened.
Wang Lei’s Son Attacked on Livestream in Penang
Wang Lei’s son, Louis, also known as Sell Fish Boy, was hosting a Facebook livestream at a Thai food street bazaar outside Penang’s Island88 shopping mall on Saturday (4 November 2023) evening.
According to HYPE, a Malaysian entertainment and news site, the Thai Cultural Event was in full swing, with Louis taking the audience on a tour of the event.
Louis engaged in a live broadcast to promote and sell products during the event, which initially ran smoothly.
However, things took an unexpected turn at the Thailand and International Bazaar Street Food Festival when Malaysian influencer Nelson Phan made an appearance and sparked a public commotion that night.
In case Wang Lei’s name doesn’t ring a bell, he’s a Singaporean actor and Getai singer.
As Wang Lei’s son, Louis, was conducting his livestream, he was unexpectedly confronted by the Malaysian influencer.
How the Confrontation Unfolded
A video captured by a netizen depicts the moment when Phan approached Louis amidst a group of people.
The video was uploaded on Facebook by user Ouyang Meimei on the same day the incident occurred.
Initially, it might seem like Phan was approaching Louis with the intention of a friendly greeting.
However, the situation escalated when Phan abruptly grabbed Louis by the shoulder and began shooing gestures with his hands to those around him.
Phan then forcefully grabbed Louis by the neck and jacket from behind, as reported by China Press.
The atmosphere grew increasingly tense as those around sensed Phan’s aggression.
Even the Thai Hot Guys, Dee Wow-Sarawut Siriphet and Veerasak Mahsahaao, who were co-hosting the livestream with Louis, intervened to separate Phan from Louis.
If you don’t know the Thai Hot Guys, they are renowned for their lively performances at their restaurant in Bangkok.
Despite Phan’s grip, with him even forcibly holding Louis’s jacket from behind, Louis managed to break free and move away.
Video footage of the incident vividly captures the Thai Hot Guys continuously attempting to push Phan away from Louis.
Amid the chaos, voices in the background from bystanders can be heard urgently pleading, “Call the police, call the police.”
In the video, Phan insisted that the group required a permit for overseas livestreaming.
Adding to the chaos, another man dressed in a white T-shirt was also seen attacking Louis.
Wang Lei and His Son’s Response to the Incident
On Monday (6 November 2023), Wang Lei and Louis went on Facebook Live to address the issue and refute Phan’s claims.
During the livestream, Louis said he was trying to run away as Phan got aggressive with him and said that Phan was chasing after him.
Louis added he was attacked by another man dressed in white, who allegedly pushed him onto the ground and stomped on him.
Wang Lei, who was seen unhappy on the Facebook Live, claimed that Phan even went to the police to say that Louis had attacked him.
“We were the victims, but yet you claim that we were the ones that caused trouble?” Wang Lei added.
“The event organiser also got approval for us to livestream at the event,” he clarified.
M’sia Influencer Nelson Phan Has Disputes with Wang Lei
Phan later claimed his target had not been Wang Lei’s son but Wang Lei himself.
Supposedly, he has had disputes with Wang Lei over alleged “provocations and indecent acts” which happened last year.
In the video captured by the netizen, Phan also pulled out a packet of condoms and sanitary pads from his bag and remarked that he had specially prepared them for Wang Lei.
“I warned you before not to play with Malaysian women,” Phan said.
According to Malaysian media reports, Phan was arrested by local police and detained for the attack that same day when the commotion happened.
HYPE also cited Malaysian entrepreneur Dato’ Tony Looi Chee Hong, who suggested that Phan’s actions stemmed from jealousy. According to him, Nelson’s true motivation for his behaviour may be Wang Lei’s rejection of a collaboration offer.
Event Organiser and Police Responded
On Sunday (5 November 2023), Eventers, the company responsible for organising the bazaar, issued a statement confirming that they had filed a police report regarding the incident.
According to The Star, Eventers also reassured the public that the company had obtained all requisite approvals from the Penang Island City Council and the mall’s management.
George Town’s acting OCPD, Supt V. Saravanan, announced that a press statement regarding the matter would be forthcoming.