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A 59-year-old Singaporean man pleaded guilty earlier this week to three charges of molesting a minor under 14. — Istock pic
A 59-year-old Singaporean man pleaded guilty earlier this week to three charges of molesting a minor under 14. — Istock pic

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SINGAPORE, Sept 24 — Within a day, a deliveryman molested his young stepdaughter several times in their public rental flat, including a moment when he was on the phone with her mother.

Yesterday (September 23), the 59-year-old Singaporean was sentenced to three years’ jail, with another three months added in lieu of six strokes of the cane. 

Offenders aged 50 or above cannot be caned under Singapore law. He cannot be named due to a court order to protect the girl’s identity.

The man pleaded guilty earlier this week to three charges of molesting a minor under 14, with another two similar charges taken into consideration for sentencing.

He will begin serving his sentence on Nov 30 and remains out on bail of S$15,000.

The court heard that the girl lived with her biological parents until November 2013, when her father died.

She then stayed with her paternal relatives and in 2014, moved in with her mother, with whom she shared a close relationship.

The accused met the girl’s mother in 2013 but was only introduced to the girl in late 2018. He moved in with them shortly after and the couple tied the knot in February 2019.

He and the girl shared a good relationship and he took care of her day-to-day needs.

Deputy Public Prosecutors Nicholas Lai and Grace Teo told the court that the girl found him fun to be around, was glad that he made her mother happy and called him “Daddy”.

The mother was often away at work, leaving her husband and daughter alone in their one-room Housing and Development Board rental flat.

Told wife he was showing love to girl

Most of the molestations happened on May 19, 2019.

The girl’s mother was cooking in the kitchen while the girl and her stepfather were watching television in the living room area.

He then abruptly pulled her towards him on the sofa and patted her head, then touched her under her T-shirt.

She was shocked but did not dare to raise an alarm, and could not push him away because he was physically bigger.

Her mother emerged from the kitchen after a minute and he quickly retracted his hands and resumed patting her head.

When she asked him what he was doing, he replied that he was showing love to the girl.

The mother then retrieved some clothes from a cupboard behind the sofa. After making sure she was not looking, he put his hands under the girl’s T-shirt and molested her again.

He then asked the girl to take a shower before leaving the flat to give his wife a lift to work.

He returned sometime later and sat on the sofa with her again. When his wife called, he spoke to her while molesting the girl a third time.

He moved to his bed and ended the call, asking the girl to join him and offering her the mobile phone, which she had been using to play a game. He then molested her some more and pleasured himself.

He asked her to shower again and she did as she was told.

The victim did not dare to tell her mother, afraid that they would argue and jeopardise their relationship. 

She waited to report him when school started again on May 21 and that morning, the stepfather slapped her buttock, court documents showed.

She went to school and told her friends, who encouraged her to tell a teacher. She then confided in a school counsellor who reported it to the school’s management.

The matter eventually reached the Ministry of Social and Family Development, and the girl was taken to Bedok North Neighbourhood Police Centre to file a police report that same day.

A psychiatric report stated that the girl was feeling “grossed out” by her stepfather’s actions and that she sometimes dreamed of him.

Offenders convicted of molesting a minor can be jailed for up to five years, fined, caned, or receive any combination of the three. ― TODAY

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