Jail for man who insulted woman's modesty in toilet

An unemployed man who trespassed on a female toilet and insulted the modesty of a woman was jailed for five weeks yesterday.

G. Raj Kumar, 26, admitted to entering the female toilet and intruding on the privacy of a 32-year-old woman at Holland Village Hawker Centre, in Holland Avenue, at about 11.40pm on July 15 last year.

He also admitted to entering a vacant house in East Sussex Lane without any good reason at about 11pm on Nov 26 the same year in a separate case. He was fined $500.

District Judge Crystal Ong imposed an additional four days' jail on Raj Kumar, who had committed the July offences while a remission order was still in force.

He had been given six months' jail in January last year for two counts of mischief by fire. He was released early on remission on May 20 the same year. But just days before the end of the remission period on July 18, he committed the criminal trespass and insulting of modesty offences.

Investigations showed that for the intrusion of privacy case, the female victim was with her friends at Holland Village Hawker Centre.

While she was using the toilet, she heard a "clicking" sound, as if someone was taking a photo of her, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Michael Quilindo.

She looked up and saw a black mobile phone at the top of the cubicle next to her own. She went out and knocked on the neighbouring cubicle door immediately. Shortly later, Raj Kumar opened the door. Asked why he was there, he claimed that he was "puking".

She asked for his mobile phone. The phone was analysed but no image or video related to the case was uncovered.

In the other case, a 35-year-old woman reported to the police on Nov 27 last year, stating that she was unsure if she had been a victim of sexual assault. Investigations showed that she and Raj Kumar had met by chance near Holland Village the previous night, and they chatted for a while.

She was intoxicated, and Raj Kumar led her to a vacant house in East Sussex Lane where they had sex. The woman blacked out. The next morning, she woke up and saw Raj Kumar nearby half-naked. She panicked and ran out of the house.

Raj Kumar, whose sentence was backdated to Sept 21 this year, had a conviction for sexually penetrating a minor in 2012. He could have been jailed for up to three months and/or fined up to $500 for criminal trespass. For insulting a woman's modesty, the maximum penalty is one year's jail and a fine, and for wilful trespass, a $1,000 fine.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 20, 2016, with the headline 'Jail for man who insulted woman's modesty in toilet'. Print Edition | Subscribe