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Chitchat Please Guess??? Caning for teacher when he molested friends’ 12-year-old daughter



Jail, caning for man who was a teacher when he molested friends’ 12-year-old daughter​


Shaffiq Alkhatib
Court Correspondent

MAR 06, 2024, 04:13 PM


SINGAPORE - A male teacher molested his friends’ 12-year-old daughter while hosting a sleepover at his condominium unit in February 2021.
At the time, the offender was the victim’s neighbour and teaching at her school.
For outraging the child’s modesty, the 41-year-old foreigner was sentenced on March 6 to a year and 11 months in jail with three strokes of the cane.

In January, District Judge Lee Lit Cheng convicted him of a molestation charge after a trial.
Details about the offender, his home and the school cannot be disclosed owing to a gag order to protect the victim’s identity.
The Straits Times is also not disclosing his nationality, as doing so could lead to the man being identified and hence the girl’s identity could be exposed.

Court documents did not disclose if the offender is still a teacher, but he had been suspended from work earlier.

In their submissions, Deputy Public Prosecutors Nicholas Wuan and Teo Siu Ming said the offender and his family members had a close relationship with the victim and her loved ones.
The girl was close to his children, and they often played together. She also had multiple sleepovers with his daughter at the offender’s home.
The victim, who was referred to as V1 in court documents, was also close to the offender. The DPPs said he was someone she respected.

She was in the same bed as his daughter during one of the sleepovers on Feb 27, 2021, the court heard.
At the time, both girls were using a fashion-related mobile phone application called Combyne. The man was standing near the victim who was under a duvet, said the prosecutors.
The DPPs told Judge Lee: “On Feb 28, 2021, past midnight, the unthinkable happened. Whilst (the girls were) busy creating outfits on a mobile phone application as part of a friendly competition... the accused slid his hand under the covers” and molested the victim.
“V1 was shocked but continued to make outfits on Combyne. She did not tell (the offender’s daughter) about what was happening as she felt that this would scar (her friend).”
According to court documents, the man stopped touching the victim only after she said she was tired a few times and that they should go to bed.

The victim left the apartment later that morning and told her mother about her ordeal.
The mother lodged a police report on March 5, 2021, and officers arrested the offender the next day.
During the trial, he denied molesting the child, stating that she had falsely accused him of committing the offence.
Among other things, he claimed that the girl made the accusation as she was purportedly having difficulty adjusting to her new school in Singapore.
He also claimed that the act of molestation could have been a vivid dream.
In their submissions, the DPPs said the victim was a credible witness, adding: “Her testimony was unusually convincing when viewed against the totality of the evidence.
“In contrast, the accused had been an evasive and unreliable witness... He even had the temerity to allege that V1 might have concocted the entire event as a ‘cry for attention’.”
The DPPs said that following the incident, the victim was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, which she was able to overcome with professional help and strong family support.
However, she still has “pretty big trust issues” and blamed herself for destroying the relationship between the two families, the court heard.
For molesting a child below 14 years old, an offender can be jailed for up to five years, fined, caned or receive any combination of such punishments.