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Lim Lian Hock caught sexually harassing teens flees to Thailand, returns 6 years later as 'life's too tough' - Mothership.SG


S'pore man caught sexually harassing teens flees to Thailand, returns 6 years later as 'life's too tough' - Mothership.SG

A man in Singapore made lewd comments to three women, including two teenagers, and masturbated in front of another woman over a span of three months in 2017.

The then-34-year-old Lim Lian Hock was arrested, and the day before he was charged in court, he fled to Thailand as he claimed he wanted to "escape reality".
When he returned to Singapore six years later, he said it was because "life in Thailand was tougher than he had expected."
According to a judgment dated Apr. 22, 2024, he was sentenced to nine months in jail.

What he did​

On May 17, 2017, Lim approached the first then-17-year-old victim and asked her for directions to Bishan Library.
He later informed her that he was doing psychological research and started to ask her personal questions, which she was uncomfortable with answering.
When she attempted to leave the scene, he followed and asked her to send him to the library.
The victim refused, and Lim suddenly asked her, “Can I suck on your breast?”
Shocked, she shouted at Lim and threatened to call the police. Lim then fled.
Less than a month later, on Jul. 2, 2017, Lim approached the second victim to ask her for directions at Blk 310B Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1.
After the victims gave him directions, Lim said, “Can I make love to you? You have very big and nice breasts".
She then raised her hands and firmly said “no” to the accused before walking away from him.
Lim asked another victim for directions in the same Ang Mo Kio area on Aug. 2, 2017.
After asking the girl if she could bring him to Upper Thomson Road, he asked, “You have big boobs; can I touch your boobs?”
She rejected Lim and walked away from the scene.
Other than sexually harassing women, on May 7, 2017, Lim committed an obscene act by masturbating in front of an unknown woman in public.
He was later arrested and served with a Notice to Attend Court on Oct. 24, 2017, but fled for Thailand a day earlier.
He returned to Singapore on Jan. 27, 2024, and was arrested again.

Risk of reoffending not high: Defence​

The judgment revealed that the prosecution asked for a sentence of between 30 and 36 months in prison.
The prosecutor also noted that the offences are "highly egregious" as two of the victims were under the age of 18.
He also said Lim lacked remorse as he claimed and blamed the investigating officer for allowing him "permission to leave Singapore".
Lim's lawyer argued that Lim's absconding was not motivated by a disregard for authority or lack of remorse but merely by his desire to "escape reality".
Lim, however, eventually returned to Singapore because life in Thailand was "tougher than he had expected."
The lawyers also said that Lim had found "healthy ways to handle his sexual urges" and did not commit any sexual offences in Thailand.
The prosecution pointed out that there was no way to verify if Lim did not commit crimes in Thailand.

Low culpability but showed lack of remorse: Judge​

The judge sentenced Lim to nine months in prison.
She explained that she assessed the harm caused to each victim to be low, and it appeared that Lim "acted out of urge and impulse" when he came across his victims and had not "given a great deal of thought before committing the offences".
"The accused’s modus operandi was unsophisticated and brief. He approached the victims for directions in a lead-up to making his sexual propositions or lewd comments," she said.
She also highlighted that he did not pursue his victims when his sexual propositions were rebuffed.
However, she said Lim's choice to abscond to Thailand "made it impossible" to conclude that he was remorseful.
"To my mind, the accused had no choice but to return to Singapore for his own personal reasons. The subsequent arrest and criminal proceedings in Court were part of the inevitable consequences arising out of his own actions," she said.
Lim is presently serving his sentence. The prosecution has filed an appeal against the decision.
Top photo from Canva