SINGAPORE - A young and defenceless girl suffered relentless sexual abuse by her biological father for nearly five years and ran away from home twice to escape his clutches, prosecutors told the High Court on Tuesday (Nov 17).
However, the 45-year-old man has denied committing any of the alleged offences, which are said to have taken place between 2010 and 2014, when his daughter was between 10 and 14 years old.
He is contesting 15 charges - 14 for sexual assault by penetration and one for outrage of modesty - in a trial that started on Tuesday (Nov 17).
He is also challenging the admissibility of four police statements that were taken from him in November 2017 after his arrest.
The accused cannot be name due to a gag order to protect the his daughter, who is now 20 years old.
Setting out its case against the accused on Tuesday, the prosecution said it will be calling 22 witnesses, including the girl's close friend, her stepfather, her mother and her elder brother.
The court heard that in 2010, the family - comprising the girl, her parents, elder brother, younger sister and a domestic worker - slept together in one room of a flat in Yishun.
The prosecution in its opening address said that the man had fondled her while everyone was sleep and told her not to tell anyone.
The man allegedly told her that he would teach her about sex and then progressed to more intrusive acts, including making her perform oral sex on him.
"As a young and impressionable girl, the victim trusted her father and allowed him to continue the sexual acts against her," said the prosecution.
In 2011, soon after the family moved to a four-room flat in Woodlands, her parents' relationship soured.
The girl ended up sharing a bed with her father, while her mother slept in a separate room.
The abuse, which included sodomy, continued, said prosecutors.
By now, the girl learnt that it was not normal for fathers and daughters to be physically intimate and told her father to stop.
But he assured her that it was okay for them to engage in sexual activities as long as nobody knew, said the prosecution.
The man also impressed on her that she would lose a father if anyone learnt of their sexual activities, and she became resigned to the constant abuse, said the prosecution.
Following her parents' divorce between 2012 and 2013, the girl returned to the Yishun flat with her father and brother.
Unable to tolerate the continued abuse, the girl ran way to her mother in December 2013. She returned to her father after he vowed to cease all sexual activities with her.
But the man returned to his old ways, and after enduring months of abuse, she ran away again at the end of 2014, said the prosecution.
The man agreed to let her remain with her mother on condition that she would not tell anyone about the abuse.
In November 2017, the girl told her stepfather and later, her mother, about the abuse. A police report was lodged that month.
The prosecution said the girl's brother will testify that the accused had confessed to committing a sexual act on her.
The brother will also testify that on one occasion in 2013 at the Woodlands flat, he was awoken when he heard his sister saying "stop", but returned to sleep as he did not suspect anything was wrong at the time.
On Tuesday, Assistant Superintendent Jereld Xu told the court that while he was recording a statement from the accused on Nov 23, 2017, the man broke down and said he had wronged his family and was sorry for what he had done to his daughter.
The trial continues.