Interior designer gets 18 months for molesting women in wee hours

SINGAPORE - An interior designer who molested three women in HDB lifts and a void deck during the wee hours was sentenced to 18 months' jail on Friday.

Lee Yok Kok, 39, a Malaysian, who pleaded guilty to four charges, was spared caning as a psychiatric report showed that he was suffering from major depression.

Assistant Public Prosecutor Lydia Goh told the court that a 24-year-old woman had returned from a drinking session at about 3.25am on Nov 30, 2013, when Lee followed her into the lift of a block at Serangoon Central Drive.

When the lift door opened at the fifth floor, the victim began to head out when Lee grabbed her left butt cheek from behind. She turned to stare at him but did not confront him further.

Surprised that she did not react, Lee followed her out of the lift and then touched her chest before running off.

On Sept 10, 2011, Lee followed a 22-year-old woman into a lift after she came home from clubbing.

When the lift doors reached the ninth floor, he groped her. She screamed and he let go of her immediately.

The victim came out of the lift and shouted for help. She held onto the lift door to stop Lee from getting away. He pushed her hand away from the door, and the lift went up to the 12th floor.

On May 5 that year, a 23-year-old Malaysian woman who took her company transport home alighted at Serangoon Central around 3.50am.

At the void deck of Block 2109, she passed Lee who was walking in the opposite direction. Lee suddenly turned and molested her. She pushed his hands away and shouted at him to go away.

Lee's sentence was deferred until July 3 for him to attend to a project.

He could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, caned or received any combined punishment.