71-year-old doctor loses appeal, sentenced to 10 months' jail for molest

Dr Winston Lee Siew Boon will serve a 10-month jail term for molestation after his appeal was dismissed by the High Court on Monday, July 20, 2015.
Dr Winston Lee Siew Boon will serve a 10-month jail term for molestation after his appeal was dismissed by the High Court on Monday, July 20, 2015.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Medical doctor Winston Lee Siew Boon, 71, failed to escape jail for molesting a patient on two occasions after the High Court on Monday dismissed his appeal against conviction and sentence.

The court found that the woman's testimony was "completely consistent internally" and that she had no motive to accuse Lee falsely of touching her breast.

In dismissing Lee's appeal against sentence, Justice Chan Seng Onn noted that the general practitioner - who is also known as a motoring writer - was " particularly cunning" in disguising his act of molestation as part of his explanation of a potential medical problem while examining the patient .

The woman trusted Lee and even gave him the benefit of the doubt after the first incident, noted Justice Chan. "It is loathsome that he did not relent and tried it again by molesting her twice on the second occasion."

"He violated the dignity of the complainant on more than one occasion and in the conduct of his noble and professional duty. He clearly abused the trust that the complainant had placed in him as her doctor."

However, Lee, a doctor for 40 years, was allowed to start his 10-month jail term on Aug 17. He had asked for time to transfer his 70,000 patients to other doctors, make caregiving arrangements for his wife and undergo a medical check-up.

The woman, a medical products sales representative, had testified that she saw Lee in June 2011 for nausea and flatulence. When she complained of chest pain, he put his hand under her bra and squeezed her breast.

She brushed it off as part of the check-up, thinking it was the doctor's way of showing the location of her heart.

Four months later, when she saw him for a sore throat and to discuss weight management, she said he groped her breast again. It was then that she realised Lee had used the excuse of showing her where the chest pain would be to touch her breast during the first incident.

She made a police report after consulting her boss and a female doctor.

Lee said that he had placed a clenched fist over her breastbone to show where she would experience chest pains.