5 teenagers were caught hiding in Ikea Tampines after closing hours: the stunt appears to be linked to the viral Internet trend – the Ikea Challenge

No property in Ikea was damaged though and the boys did not make any attempt to steal from the store.
The New Paper

Internet trends and challenges are often funny, harmless and sometimes a little mind-boggling.

But most of the time, it’s all in good fun.

However, the line is drawn when these Internet trends start to pose dangers to those who take up the challenge.

Singapore Police Force said in a press release on Sunday (March 31) that the police were alerted to a case of trespassing at No. 60 Tampines North Drive 2 – where Ikea Tampines is located – at 12.52am on Sunday.

The New Paper reported on Tuesday (April 2), that an Ikea spokesman said that the police were notified by the public after spotting the teenagers’ exploits on one of their social media accounts.

Subsequently, police from the Bedok Police Division located the youths and arrested them.

Preliminary police investigations revealed that the youths hid in the Ikea building and stayed beyond operating hours. The trespassing act carries a punishment of a fine not exceeding $1,000.

No property in Ikea was damaged though, and the boys did not make any attempt to steal from the store.

Ikea’s spokesman told The New Paper: “Ikea is a fun destination for many people and we love to give fans a great day out but an unsanctioned sleepover is simply not safe, given the warehouse operations and heavy equipment in our building. The safety of people in our store is our top priority.”

The spokesman added that Ikea intends to write to the police investigative branch to ask for leniency.

The youths were suspected to be mimicking a popular stunt known as the Ikea Challenge.

The Ikea Challenge started to trend after Belgian Youtuber Bakuna Fatata filmed and uploaded a video of himself and his friend sleeping overnight in Ikea in August 2016.

Since 2016, many other videos have been uploaded onto YouTube by those who have taken on the Ikea Challenge –  and most videos have over 1 million views.

The Ikea Challenge encourages people, especially youngsters, to hide and build forts in Ikea outlets overnight, before sneaking out the next morning.

But this could be dangerous if heavy items are moved inappropriately and they could potentially cause harm when dropped.

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