Alleged mishandling of sexual assault case: No response from WP MP Raeesah, say police

Police said MP Raeesah Khan has not responded to requests to provide more details on the case she raised in Parliament in August. PHOTO: GOV.SG

SINGAPORE - The police on Wednesday (Oct 20) said it has not managed to identify a case of sexual assault that Workers' Party (WP) MP Raeesah Khan had alleged was mishandled, following an extensive search.

"We cannot confirm that such an incident actually took place," the police said in a statement, adding that Ms Raeesah has not responded to requests to provide more details on the case she raised in Parliament in August.

In response to queries from The Straits Times, Ms Raeesah said: "As the issue relates to a speech I made in Parliament, I will make a statement on the matter at the next sitting of Parliament on Nov 1, subject to the Speaker's approval."

The Serious Sexual Crime Branch of the Criminal Investigation Department, which investigates rape offences, had sent an e-mail to Ms Raeesah on Oct 7 asking her to contact the police and arrange an interview by Oct 14.

"The police needed her to provide details on the case. She was assured that the police would do everything possible to safeguard the victim's identity from public disclosure," the police said.

Another e-mail was sent to Ms Raeesah last Friday (Oct 15), asking her to reply by Monday (Oct 18).

The police said it has not heard from Ms Raeesah, who "has so far not substantiated her allegations against police officers with further details on the case".

In a speech during a debate on empowering women on Aug 3, Ms Raeesah had told the House that she accompanied a 25-year-old rape victim to a police station to make a report three years ago.

She said the police officer who interviewed the victim had allegedly made inappropriate comments about her dressing and the fact that she has been drinking.

On Oct 4, Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam asked Ms Raeesah in Parliament to provide more details, such as the rough date of the incident, which police station she had accompanied the victim to, about the police officers involved, and whether she had highlighted the incident to the police or filed a complaint.

The minister said the police had checked their records and found no cases that fit Ms Raeesah's description.

In response, Ms Raeesah affirmed that her account was true but repeatedly declined to reveal any further details, citing confidentiality concerns.

Mr Shanmugam then said the police would interview Ms Raeesah and continue to investigate the case.

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