Man jailed for molesting daughter when she was about 5, police report made 9 years later

SINGAPORE - A man who molested his biological daughter when she was five or six years old was on Tuesday (Feb 22) sentenced to three years and four months in jail.

She realised what her father did was wrong only several years later when she was an upper primary pupil, after watching a video on sexual crime.

The crime was finally reported to the police when the victim was about 14 years old in 2018.

After a trial, Principal District Judge Toh Han Li convicted the father, now 61, of two molestation charges last month.

The Singaporean man cannot be named owing to a gag order to protect the victim's identity.

The victim, now 18, testified during the trial that she was eating in the living room of the family flat some time in 2009 when her father called her into a bedroom. Her mother was not at home at the time.

The offender was wearing only a towel around his waist at the time, said Deputy Public Prosecutors Krystle Chiang and Samyata Ravindran in their submissions.

The court heard that he then asked her to sit on his right thigh while he used a computer.

When the girl complied, he grabbed her left hand and placed it on his genitals.

The prosecutors said that the victim recalled feeling scared because she did not know what her father was doing. He then touched his daughter's private parts before she left the room.

When her mother returned home, the girl did not tell her what had happened as her father had told her not to do so.

The victim finally broke her silence about her ordeal about a month later.

The DPPs said: "Her mother told her to never allow anyone (to) touch (her) there ever again and asked why (the girl) did not tell her earlier.

"No police report was lodged at (the time) because her mother told her that 'there's no hard, concrete evidence, so there's no point'."

The victim recalled her mother confronting the man about the incident, but she did not say anything as she did not want to get involved in their quarrel.

The couple later divorced and the man moved out.

During an earlier court proceeding, the girl testified that she was an upper primary pupil when she watched a YouTube video about a victim of a sexual crime.

She then realised her father had committed a "wrongdoing". Despite this, the girl did not make a police report as she did not know what to do.

The prosecutors noted that the girl started having panic attacks in school close to 2018 "whenever there are a lot of boys".

She later saw a school counsellor who asked her what had triggered the attacks.

The police were finally alerted on Jan 11, 2018.

In his defence, the man claimed his daughter fell off his lap in 2009 and he had caught her before she hit the floor.

For each count of molesting a child below 14, an offender can be jailed for up to five years and fined or caned.

The man cannot be caned as he is over 50 years old.

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