Ex-engineer gets nine months' jail for taking more than 200 upskirt videos over 10 months

Be Keng Hoo, a former test engineer who took upskirt videos more than 200 times in the space of 10 months  was sentenced to nine months' jail on Tuesday, Mar 4, 2014. -- ST FILE PHOTO: NURIA LING
Be Keng Hoo, a former test engineer who took upskirt videos more than 200 times in the space of 10 months  was sentenced to nine months' jail on Tuesday, Mar 4, 2014. -- ST FILE PHOTO: NURIA LING

A former test engineer who took upskirt videos more than 200 times in the space of 10 months was sentenced to nine months' jail on Tuesday.

Be Keng Hoon, now unemployed, was offered $10,000 bail pending his appeal against sentence. The 36-year-old had pleaded guilty to five counts of intruding into the privacy of women in April and August 2012.

In all, he committed 264 such offences at public spaces like malls between October 2011 and August 2012.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Yang Ziliang said Be was at ION Orchard shopping mall on Aug 14, 2012 when he decided to record upskirt videos of women.

He went to the toilet and secured his iPhone 4 to his shoe laces on his left shoe. The camera lens of the phone, which was set to video recording mode, was facing upwards.

He stood beside a glass railing for about 10 minutes before following a 19-year-old. He stood behind her on the escalator and captured footage of her inner thighs and underwear without her knowledge.

Be then walked away for a while before approaching the victim and following her as she headed for the escalator going down. He stood behind her and took a video recording of her inner thighs and underwear under her dress.

The victim's boyfriend noticed Be standing very close behind the victim and found his behaviour suspicious. He confronted Be and asked what was the item in his shoe was. Be initially denied it was a mobile phone, but later admitted it and apologised.

The phone was seized by the police who sent it for forensic examination and 263 other similar videos were recovered.

His lawyer Rakesh Vasu said it was clear from medical evidence that Be suffered from stress and voyeuristic tendency at the time.

Mr Yang highlighted several aggravating factors to push for a jail term. He said the number of charges not only reflected persistence, but also that such offences were hard to detect. The offences were committed at public places, escalators and shopping malls.

Be used a recording device which allowed for repeated viewings and carried the risk of circulation, Mr Yang added. Be could have been jailed for up to one year and/or fined on each charge.

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