Singaporean found guilty of sexually abusing young stepdaughter with sex toy in 2012

A Singapore man who sexually abused his 12-year-old stepdaughter told her that if she did not want to be punished for not doing her homework properly, she could perform a sex act on him. — TODAY pic
A Singapore man who sexually abused his 12-year-old stepdaughter told her that if she did not want to be punished for not doing her homework properly, she could perform a sex act on him. — TODAY pic

SINGAPORE, June 3 — A man who sexually abused his 12-year-old stepdaughter over several months in 2012 was convicted yesterday.

Among other things, the court heard that he made the girl masturbate him on one occasion with a “box-like sex toy” between February and July that year.

His stepdaughter, now 20 years old, testified during the trial that he had also physically punished her for failing to do her homework properly, such as striking her face or hand with a rolled-up magazine.

He gave her an alternative to being beaten — performing a sex act on him.

She was so traumatised from these events that she would cry and harm herself to “release the pain,” she said.

The stepfather, now 43 years old, cannot be named due to a court order to protect her identity.

Aside from claiming trial to the single charge under the Children and Young Persons Act, the man pleaded guilty yesterday to five charges of filming up the skirts of unknown women. 

His ex-wife — the girl’s mother — discovered the videos in 2017 while cleaning their home in Sengkang. She filed for divorce after her daughter told her about the sexual abuse the following year.

The man admitted to taking the videos in 2016 by placing his camcorder in a paper bag and positioning it under his victims’ skirts.

Helped her with homework

Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Goh Yiling told the court that the sexual abuse case “inadvertently came to light” when the girl filed a police report in August 2018.

She was afraid that her stepfather would make her life miserable if she came clean about the sexual abuse, and this “weighed heavily in her mind” during police investigations into the physical abuse in 2012, DPP Goh said.

The girl gave evidence that in 2012, when she returned home from school, her stepfather would tutor her but turn abusive when she did not “study properly”. This included making her stand outside their flat in Kallang Bahru for hours till midnight.

Nevertheless, she told the court that she was “grateful” for his help in her studies.

Once, as an alternative to the physical abuse, he got her to play a game called “Millionaire” in his bedroom. After she lost the game, he sexually abused her with the toy.

She testified that after this occasion, she was forced to perform the same act on him as frequently as once a week. Her mother was never home during such times, only returning home in the evenings.

The abuse stopped in July 2012 when the girl’s teacher noticed that she had been badly beaten and took her to file a police report. He had hit the girl with a rolled-up magazine the day before until her lips bled.

The girl stayed at a home afterwards and never returned to the flat. The man was given a warning by the police.

DPP Goh said: “For years, the victim did not disclose (the sexual abuse) The accused had told her it was a “secret that only two person can know” and that he would ‘make sure something (would) happen to (her)' if she told anyone else.

“She did ‘hint’ to her mother back in 2012 by saying ‘uncle is a molester’. However, when (her mother) probed further, the victim could not tell her about the incidents because the accused was present. The victim also did not confide in anyone else as she was ‘scared people (would) look down on me.'”

The sexual abuse finally came to light almost a year after the girl’s mother discovered the upskirt videos. Even though the girl had not been living with her stepfather for years, she was still afraid to reveal what had happened due to his threats.

She told her mother only after her mother said that she “knew everything” about the man. 

The girl then replied: “If you know something and you didn’t do anything about it, then I won’t forgive you.”

After they went home to the Sengkang residence, the mother searched for the man’s sex toys in their bedroom and took a photograph of them. 

Mother and daughter made a police report the next day.

The girl’s mother also decided to file for divorce after learning of the sexual abuse. During the trial, she testified that the man did own sex toys in 2012 that matched the one her daughter had described.

Several months after going to the authorities, the girl began seeing a psychiatrist because she had begun to harm herself and blame herself for sabotaging her mother’s marriage to the man by reporting the matter. The psychiatrist diagnosed her with persistent depressive disorder.

In his defence, the man — represented by lawyer Rabi Ahmad — outright denied possessing the sex toy and making the girl use it on him.

He will return to court later this month to be sentenced. He could be jailed up to five years, fined up to S$10,000 (RM30,654), or both, for the charge under the Children and Young Persons Act.

For taking upskirt videos and insulting a woman's modesty, he could be jailed up to a year, fined, or both. — TODAY

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