Remaining three molestation charges against ex-senior public servant withdrawn

SINGAPORE - A former senior public servant at an education-related government body, who was earlier sentenced to four weeks' jail for molesting a female subordinate in 2016, has had three remaining molestation charges linked to her withdrawn.

In a statement to The Straits Times on Monday (Oct 18), the Attorney-General's Chambers said: "Having regard to the sentence imposed, and after assessing the facts and circumstances of the remaining charges in view of the conviction recorded, the prosecution applied for a discharge amounting to an acquittal for the remaining charges."

District Judge Ng Cheng Thiam issued a discharge amounting to an acquittal following a pre-trial conference last Thursday.

This means that the 68-year-old Singaporean man cannot be charged again with the same offences.

Details about the man, the government body and the position he held cannot be revealed due to a gag order to protect the women's identities.

He initially faced nine molestation charges linked to the two female subordinates, who were aged 41 and 54 at the time.

He claimed trial to six counts of molestation involving the pair.

The man, who has since retired, had molested the older woman in mid-2016 by hugging her tightly.

The offence came to light in March 2018, when she suddenly asked the younger woman if she had a problem with him "touching her".

The pair had a meeting with other seniors on March 28, 2018, and the police were alerted.

Following the trial, District Judge John Ng found the man guilty of one molestation charge involving the older woman and sentenced him to six weeks' jail in January this year.

The judge acquitted him of five molestation charges linked to the younger woman.

He found that while the older woman's evidence was "cogent and reliable", there were "material inconsistencies" between the younger woman's police statement and her evidence in court.

The man's sentence was later reduced to four weeks' jail following an appeal. He had three other molestation charges against him involving the older woman and these were the charges that were withdrawn last week.

For molestation, an offender can be jailed for up to two years and fined or caned.

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