Upskirt video man gets lengthy jail time

Thian Kit Siong, 33, admitted to 37 charges of insulting the modesty of a woman. He said he would feel a very strong sexual urge whenever he saw women in skirts, which was why he filmed them.
Thian Kit Siong, 33, admitted to 37 charges of insulting the modesty of a woman. He said he would feel a very strong sexual urge whenever he saw women in skirts, which was why he filmed them.ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

12 months for chef who targeted women in supermarket; his phone had 203 video clips

Over three months, a chef took upskirt videos of unsuspecting women at Raffles City Shopping Centre, where he worked, and at City Hall MRT station.

Malaysian Thian Kit Siong's luck ran out last June when a couple confronted him after he had taken an upskirt video of a 29-year-old woman at the supermarket at the basement of Raffles City. A total of 203 video clips were found in his phone.

Yesterday, the 33-year-old was jailed for 12 months, one of the longest sentences meted out to such offenders, after admitting to 37 charges of insulting the modesty of a woman. Ninety-nine other charges were considered during his sentencing.

Thian said he would feel a very strong sexual urge whenever he saw women in skirts, which was why he filmed them. He usually took the videos when he was on a toilet break or when his supervisor at Poulet restaurant gave him a break at work.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Jasmine Chin-Sabado said investigations showed that Thian would head to the supermarket and look for young women in skirts.

When he identified his victims, he would look around to ensure that no one was watching him before planning how to film them.

He would switch his phone to video mode and would either stand beside or behind his victim. He would turn his mobile phone upside down such that the camera lens was facing upwards, place it between their legs and film them.

While doing this, he would pretend to be browsing the goods on display so that he could carry out the filming discreetly and avoid detection. He filmed the victims even when they were with other people.

On occasion, the victims were with their partners but Thian was still able to take videos of them without getting caught. After taking the upskirt videos, he would lock himself in his room back home and view them.

Last June, a victim was at the bread section of the supermarket when she felt something touch her leg. She turned around and saw Thian squatting and selecting two boxes of cereal from the display rack.

He was holding a phone in his right hand. She walked away and decided to observe him.

She saw him following other women in the supermarket. She immediately told her 34-year-old husband, and the couple saw him squatting behind three other women.

Thian then went to the toilet.

When he came out of the toilet hurriedly, the woman's husband, who was the complainant, confronted him, calling him a "pervert''. Thian ignored him and proceeded onto the escalator. The complainant chased after him and said: "You took upskirt right?'' but he kept quiet and continued walking up.

Meanwhile, an off-duty police officer saw the complainant confronting Thian. He identified himself and asked for Thian's mobile phone. Multiple upskirt videos were found and Thian was arrested.

Ms Chin-Sabado said there was an occasion when Thian followed a victim for almost an hour and took eight videos of the victim, which lasted seven minutes and 45 seconds.

In another court, Allen Lim Heng Keat, 48, who is self-employed, was jailed for 12 weeks yesterday after admitting to seven of 24 charges of insulting modesty last year. His phone was found to have 75 screenshots of upskirt videos pertaining to 21 unknown women.

The maximum punishment for insulting modesty is one year's jail and a fine on each charge.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 05, 2017, with the headline 'Upskirt video man gets lengthy jail time'. Print Edition | Subscribe