Kallang Bahru rape trial: Accused claims sex in car was consensual

The scene of the alleged rape along Kallang Bahru Road on May 4, 2013. -- PHOTO: THE NEW PAPER
The scene of the alleged rape along Kallang Bahru Road on May 4, 2013. -- PHOTO: THE NEW PAPER

He says they were already touching each other and he felt no need to ask

The  sex was consensual.

This is what a 24-year-old storeman on trial for raping and robbing a 34-year-old woman after offering her a lift is claiming.

On the fourth day of the trial yesterday, the court heard that Haliffie Mamat gave three police statements in which he claimed that she willingly had sex with him after he stopped his car on the bridge along Kallang Bahru.

This was before he pushed her out and drove off with her branded handbag.

The alleged rape occurred in the early morning of May 4, 2013.

Haliffie told Inspector Thermizi Tho, who took the statements, that he had been driving around town in his Proton Savvy the night before after a violent quarrel with his wife over money problems.

He then saw a woman in a short black dress walking alone in River Valley Road. The court had earlier heard that she was trying to hail a cab after drinking alone at Clarke Quay.

"I was thinking about just snatching her bag but I decided to... pretend to give her a lift first" and see how things played out, Haliffie told the police.

He pulled up in front of her and offered her a lift.

She told him where she lived and asked if she had to pay; he replied that it was on him.

His initial plan of driving off after she put her Louis Vuitton bag in the car was foiled when she got in and placed the bag on her lap instead, he added.

During the journey, she offered him a cigarette and they had a chat. She said that she was originally from Indonesia, was a single parent, and lived with her son.

He claimed to have asked if she liked sex. She allegedly replied: "Who doesn't?"

He then touched her right thigh with his left hand.

The woman, who he thought was "attractive and hot", did not overtly say that she wanted to have sex, he admitted.

But Haliffie told the police they ended up touching each other. "The feeling is already 'hyped', like don't have to ask any more (sic)," he said.

After stopping on the Kallang Bahru bridge, he climbed over her and they had sex for about five minutes on the lowered front passenger seat. In one of his police statements, he said that he later asked her if she liked it, and she smiled and said: "Ya."

After this, he drove off but stopped again as he wanted to take her bag, which she had flung to the backseat.

He said he opened the door on her side, pushed her out with his left hand and drove off without even closing the door.

At the carpark near his Bukit Batok flat, he looked through her bag, taking her ez-link card, a bottle of perfume, a mobile phone and $18, he said.

He dumped the bag and other items, including a shoe she left behind, near a dustbin, he said. He later sold the phone for $150.

Haliffie's statements were admitted in court while defence counsel Lionel Leo was cross-examining investigating officer Tho.

The accused is expected to take the stand today.

selinal@sph.com.sg