Sales exec gets six months' jail for threats to 14-year-old girl

Kheh posed as a woman on Facebook to "lure" his victim.
Kheh posed as a woman on Facebook to "lure" his victim.PHOTO: ST FILE

Posing as a woman on Facebook, a sales executive befriended a 14-year- old girl and offered her a job to accompany clients for movies, shopping and dining.

The girl sent him several photographs of herself, including one of her wearing a sports bra. When she later refused to meet him, Kheh Yun Leong threatened to post that photo online for men to perform lewd acts to, alarming her.

Yesterday, the 25-year-old was jailed for six months for criminal intimidation .

Deputy Public Prosecutor Houston Johannus told the court last month that Kheh set up a Facebook account bearing the name "Tan Shu Xuan" with a profile picture of a female.

On May 16, 2014, he befriended the girl on his Facebook account and they started communicating. She thought Kheh was a female the entire time. He found out that she was below 18 years of age.

He sent her a message and offered her a job paying $800 to $1,000 an hour to accompany clients to watch movies, shop and dine. She accepted.

He asked for her photograph as a pre-requisite for the job and to meet at Bukit Gombak MRT station the following day for an interview. But she was unable to meet him.

He then asked her to send him a sensual photograph of herself so that he could get her a better rate from potential clients.

He asked to meet her at the same MRT station the next day, but the meeting did not take place.

On May 24, she received messages from him stating that he had found a client who offered to pay $2,000 an hour, but she ignored them.

Four days later, he sent her further messages to meet, but she gave excuses to avoid meeting him.

He demanded more sensual photographs from her which she ignored. He then threatened her, stating that if she did not meet him on May 29, he would upload the photo of her in the sports bra online for other men to view, with intent to injure her reputation.

She made a police report the next day, and Kheh was arrested on June 26 that year.

DPP Johannus said Kheh's motive in committing the offence was for the girl to perform oral sex on him. "By setting up the FB account and posing as a woman, the accused wanted to lure the victim to meet a 'male friend' of this woman, who would in actual fact be the accused himself,'' he said.

DPP Johannus sought a jail sentence of eight months' jail, highlighting aggravating factors such as pre-meditation, Kheh's deception of an unsuspecting victim and the use of social media.

Kheh, represented by Mr Anil Balchandani, could have been jailed for up to two years and/or fined.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 21, 2016, with the headline 'Sales exec gets six months' jail for threats to 14-year-old girl'. Print Edition | Subscribe