Ex-property agent jailed for one year for maid abuse and other offences

A former property agent who abused two domestic workers working for her father was jailed for 12 months on Tuesday.

Wong Pui Kwan, 27, had faced six charges of causing hurt to two maids, three of using criminal force and two each of committing a rash act and insulting modesty.

The divorcee with three children, who is slim with long coloured hair, had admitted to six charges of causing hurt, using criminal force, rash act to endanger personal safety of the victim, Filipina Rinonos Analyn Almoite, 30, and insulting her modesty at her father's home in Sengkang East Road in 2011.

The court was told Wong had been abusing Ms Rinonos since October 2011, a month after she began work for the household. She ran away with the other maid, Myanmar national Su Su Han, 35, on Dec 6, 2011 while Wong and the rest of the household were still sleeping.

Multiple bruises and skin discoloration were found on Ms Rinonos' limbs and buttocks at Alexandra Hospital.

Assistant Public Prosecutor Andrew Low said sometime in November 2011, Ms Rinonos was in the bedroom toilet to prepare to shower Wong's two young daughters, then aged two and four, when Wong used a cane to hit her body and back several times without any reason.

On one occasion late at night that month, Wong heard her daughters crying and woke Ms Rinonos up. She ordered the victim to go to the kitchen toilet where she splashed cooking oil on the victim, who was then ordered to sleep in the balcony.

On Nov 30 that year, Wong used a plastic tub to hit the Ms Rinonos' head twice after accusing her of not looking after her infant son when he vomited. The tub broke.

Wong then used a pair of scissors to cut Ms Rinonos' hair.

"The accused further told the victim that she will cut off all her hair if she makes mistakes again,'' said Mr Low.

On another occasion, Ms Rinonos had accidentally kicked a blue kid's chair in the living room. When Wong saw that it was out of place, she questioned the victim and threw the chair at her, hitting her on the thigh and causing a big bruise.

The last abuse occurred on Dec 5 when Wong scolded Ms Rinonos for not cleaning her daughter's mouth properly after feeding. Wong was seated on the children's chair when she pulled down the maid's shorts and panties to her feet. She warned her that she would do it again if she did not follow her instructions.

Ms Su Su Han witnessed this and heard the children laughing at the victim. Wong had faced two charges of kicking and slapping Ms Su as well, which the judge took into consideration.

Ms Rinonos has since returned home while the Myanmar maid is working elsewhere.

Wong could have been jailed for up to three years and/or fined up to $7,500 for each charge of maid abuse. For using criminal force, the maximum punishment is three months' jail and a $500 fine; for doing a rash act, it's one year and a $5,000 fine, and for insulting modesty, one year and a fine.