Bangladesh national gets 11 months' jail, 3 strokes for molesting maid

SINGAPORE - First, he grabbed the maid's breast from behind after he had asked her for her phone number along a sheltered walkway.

Bangladeshi marine trade worker Hannan, 32, then followed her to the lift lobby where he again tried to ask for her number before wrapping his arms around her tightly and molesting her.

On Tuesday (Nov 7), Hannan was sentenced to 11 months' jail and three strokes of the cane after he admitted to two counts of outrage of modesty at Teban Gardens Road on Sept 2, 2017.

Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Gail Wong said that the 32-year-old Indonesian victim and Myanmar domestic worker Liani, 25, were at the playground at Teban Gardens Road with two young children when the victim saw Hannan speaking on the cellphone.

The victim's employer was overseas at the time and she was temporarily staying with her employer's relative, Liani's employer.

The victim, Liani and the children - a boy and a girl - left the playground at about 6.30pm and were walking towards the block along the sheltered walkway when Hannan called out to the victim, stating "sister, sister, give number'' and extended his phone to her. She ignored him and continued to walk away.

Suddenly, Hannan grabbed her breast from behind, once. She quickly walked ahead as she was scared, shouting to Hannan not to touch her, said DPP Wong.

At the lift lobby, the victim held the girl's hand and Liani piggybacked her employer's son while waiting for the lift.

Hannan came up from the victim's side and tried to ask for her number, but she walked to the other side. He then hugged her from behind and squeezed her right breast.

To evade his grip, the victim squatted down, covered her chest. This was witnessed by Liani. The girl started crying.

The four got into the lift and when they got home, they told Liani's employer, the informant, what had happened. The victim was crying by this time.

The informant and the victim quickly went down and the victim identified Hannan who denied the molestation. He tried to leave but was detained by a male passer-by.

DPP Wong, who sought a stiff sentence of at least 11 months and three strokes of the cane, said that Hannan had committed the offences against a vulnerable victim multiple times persistently, and with escalating force.

Furthermore, she said the circumstances were inherently reprehensible,having been committed in front of a young child and in broad daylight in the heart of a residential estate.

After having viewed the CCTV footage in chambers, District Judge Lim Tse Haw said it reinforced his view that caning should be imposed.

"The CCTV shows the brazenness and audacity of the accused in the commission of the offences,'' he said.

Hannan, represented by Mr Sunil Sudheesan and Ms Diana Ngiam, could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, caned or received any combined punishment for each charge of molestation.