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www.corpun.com   :  Archive   :  2005   :  SG Judicial Sep 2005

-- THE ARCHIVE --


SINGAPORE

Judicial CP - September 2005



Corpun file 16477

masthead
Straits Times, Singapore, 6 September 2005

Sex fiend molested 8 women in one block

Naked serial molester jailed after he admits lying in wait for women returning home at night

By Chong Chee Kin and Khushwant Singh

FOR years, Chua Tong Tyan terrorised the residents of a Henderson Road block.


TERROR ON 10TH FLOOR: Five of the eight women were molested by Chua on this floor.

The sex predator lurked in the shadows late at night, waiting to strike when his prey returned home alone.

Wrapping a T-shirt around his head so his victims could not identify him, he was behind sexual crimes against eight women.

They were all residents of the same block, with five living on the same floor.

Chua, 26, a cook, was jailed for three years on Friday, after admitting molesting and exposing himself to his victims, who were aged between 20 and 29. He was also sentenced to eight strokes of the rotan.

UNMASKED: Chua appeared naked in front of victims, save for a t-shirt wrapped around his head.

His reign of terror began more than three years ago, and his first victim was the oldest. Chua, who lived 10 blocks away, was at the 10th floor lift landing just before midnight on May 22, 2002.

As the woman walked along the common corridor, he hugged her from behind and groped her breast before running off.

He was back on June 19, 2003. Soon after midnight, he hugged a woman from behind while he was naked on the 10th floor common corridor.

The following April, Chua started to appear totally nude before his victims. He did this to different women on three occasions last year.

A 20-year-old, whom Chua knew, was his victim on March 17 this year, as she returned home at about 1.30am.

While she chatted on her mobile phone, Chua grabbed her from behind.

He covered her mouth with one hand to prevent her from screaming for help. With the other hand, he molested her.

Instantly, the woman sank her teeth into his hand, and he ran off. The woman tried to dash home but found Chua at a nearby lift landing, his T-shirt around his head, showing only his eyes. His shorts were around his knees, and he was masturbating.

He stumbled towards her, and again covered her mouth and molested her. He fled when she managed to scream for help.

On July 10, he was back, this time on the ninth floor. At 1am, he hugged a woman while wearing just his underwear. Ten days later, he masturbated in front of another woman on the 5th floor common corridor.

His reign of terror came to an end on July 28. With descriptions given by victims, police spotted and arrested him at the same block in an ambush at 1.30am.

He could have been jailed for up to 10 years and caned.

Police spokesman Victor Keong yesterday said that a month after the sixth victim was molested this March, police distributed newsletters with a description of the suspect. 'Plainclothes officers were also deployed to look out for the suspect.'

Grassroots organisations also posted the leaflets on estate notice boards, he added.

As to why residents were not alerted sooner, he said that earlier victims could not provide a detailed description.

A Straits Times check of the neighbourhood yesterday found that many of the 160 households on the ninth to 12th floors of the block had not known a serial molester had been preying on residents.

One woman who was in the dark became his last victim. She told The Straits Times yesterday she was returning to her flat on the fifth floor at about 2am, when she saw Chua masturbating.

She said: 'He looked frightening with his face covered and only his eyes showing. I screamed and fled to my flat before he could do anything worse.' The 28-year-old made a police report later that morning.

Hearing his sentence, she said: 'He's a sex pervert, he should be locked up forever.'




Corpun file 16638

masthead
Today, Singapore, 19 September 2005

Heroin in check, but new threats loom

DPM Wong on the great turnaround in the S'pore drug scene

By Tor Ching Li

An all-out war against drug abuse over the past 10 years has resulted in a much-changed drug scene in Singapore today.

Heroin abuse has dwindled from 5,933 cases in 1994 to 111 last year. The total number of drug arrests plunged from 6,165 in 1994 to 955 last year.

Citing these statistics at a national seminar yesterday showcasing Singapore's decade of progress towards a drug-free society, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs Wong Kan Seng said: "The United Nations World Drug Report of 2005 shows that Singapore has one of the lowest prevalence of drug abuse compared to most countries in Asia and Europe."

This is in stark contrast to the backdrop of the first national seminar on Community Action Against Drug Abuse in 1994, when Singapore was on the verge of a drug crisis, recalled Mr Wong.

This year, as of August, only 55 of the 2,774 drug abusers released from their first long-term imprisonment — of up to 13 years and 12 strokes of the cane — were re-arrested and sentenced to another long period of imprisonment.

However, new and serious drug threats are emerging, said Mr Wong. Synthetic drug abusers constituted 76 per cent of the drug arrests last year.

"New synthetic drugs will continue to emerge as the rapid advancement of science and technology will make the production of these drugs easier and simpler … if a new generation of Singaporeans see synthetic drug abuse as permissible and acceptable, they will be falling down a very slippery slope," he stressed.

The profile of synthetic drug abusers is also different from the heroin drug addicts.

Ms Carolyn Kan, chairperson of the National Council Against Drug Abuse publicity sub-committee, said: "The profile of drug abusers has become younger. Percentages of Chinese abusers and female abusers has increased sharply, and socio-economic profiles have become less blue-collar."

The 400 participants from various government agencies and voluntary welfare organisations were urged to explore new ways of tackling the emerging drug trends — such as adapting the current anti-drug strategy to deal with the synthetic drug problem and how to arrest the problem of prescription drug abuse.

Said Mr Wong: "We cannot expect to win tomorrow's war with yesterday's battle plans."

Copyright MediaCorp Press Ltd. All rights reserved.




Corpun file 16652

masthead
Straits Times, Singapore, 20 September 2005

Man in love triangle jailed for threat to kill rival

He also tried to extort $2m from older man, saying he'll expose affair

By Chong Chee Kin

(extracts)

IT WAS a love triangle involving three married people, with tales of extortion, death threats and sex.


JAIL AND CANING: Cheang was furious when he found out that his lover was two-timing him.

Hawker centre cook Cheang Hook Tai, 43, was well aware that Chinese national Huang Qiao Zhu, 41, was married when he started an affair with her.

But when he discovered that she was two-timing him with another man old enough to be his father, he flipped.

A furious Cheang tried to extort $2 million from 65-year-old retiree Lee Siew Kin by threatening to expose his affair to his family.

At one point, Cheang even threatened to kill the older man with a car bomb.

[...]

Yesterday, Cheang, a permanent resident from Malaysia, was jailed for two years and ordered to be caned two strokes after he was convicted of criminal intimidation and attempt to extort money.

Huang, an immigration offender now serving a four-month jail term for overstaying, began her affair with Mr Lee in 2001.

Two years later, she met Cheang.

She maintained relationships with both men.

When Cheang found out, he confronted Huang, but she refused to call off her relationship with the older man.

She explained to Cheang that Mr Lee had treated her well and even gave her an allowance.

In court yesterday, assistant public prosecutor Eugene Kwang told a district court how Cheang then put in place his plan to blackmail Mr Lee in a bid to make him end his relationship with the woman.

[...]

Yesterday, in his mitigation, Cheang's lawyer, Mr Lim Swee Tee, said his client's original intention was to extort only $20,000 from Mr Lee.

'However, he made a mistake and sent a wrong message to Mr Lee asking for $2,000,000 instead,' the lawyer said.

Mr Lim said Cheang made the car-bomb threat because he thought Mr Lee was responsible for Huang's arrest on immigration offences in June.

'This is not a threat from a terrorist or in any way remotely related to terrorist activities,' he said.

'It was clear...that it came from a man who was overwhelmed and deranged by the loss of a person he loved.'

Cheang could have been jailed for up to seven years.




Corpun file 16746

masthead
Straits Times, Singapore, 22 September 2005

Man jailed for molesting 3 girls

A 22-YEAR-OLD Bangladeshi welder molested two teenagers and an 11-year-old girl at the Wild Wild Wet theme park - all within a few minutes.

PUNISHED: Saiful, who committed the offence at a theme park, will also be given 12 strokes of the cane.

Saiful Islam Miah Fazlul Haque was yesterday sentenced to 20 months in jail and 12 strokes of the cane for molesting the girls at the Pasir Ris Park on Sept 4.

District Judge F.G. Remedios heard that Saiful, who was there to attend his company's function, was in the Shiok River attraction at Wild Wild Wet at 2.15pm when he swam up and stroked a 15-year-old girl. A minute later, he swam up to a 14-year-old and pressed her breast.

Five minutes later, he groped the 11-year-old girl from behind.

She pushed away his hand and got out of the pool to tell her mother who called security guards.

Saiful was detained and handed over to the police.

The court also heard that Saiful had tried to befriend the 11-year-old earlier but she had ignored him.

He followed her around but she lost sight of him until he molested her.




Corpun file 16745

masthead
Straits Times, Singapore, 28 September 2005

Prisoner left paralysed after attack by inmate

By Chong Chee Kin

PRISON inmate Lim Kok Hua now lies helpless on a bed in a medical ward in the Changi Prison Complex, unable to walk, speak, read or write.

The right side of the 31-year-old's body is paralysed. He has problems swallowing and needs help from nurses to eat, drink or go to the toilet.

He has been that way since a fellow inmate in Tanah Merah Prison attacked him last October.

Yesterday, convicted drug trafficker Mohammad Sabri Yus, 36, was sentenced to four years' jail for the attack, on top of his current seven-year term. Sabri, who was sent to prison three years ago, was also ordered to be given 12 strokes of the cane.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Crystal Ong told a district court that the attack was sparked by a minor incident during a morning exercise routine on Oct 13 last year.

Sabri had been doing push-ups at the exercise yard when someone ran past him, nearly hitting his face.

'He believed that Lim had deliberately done so to irritate him and he became agitated. He stopped doing his push-ups and ran after him,' she said.

Sabri caught up with Lim as he was jogging past a concrete bench and slammed his elbow into the left side of Lim's face.

Relating the accounts of other inmates in the yard, DPP Ong said: 'Upon impact, he fell and his head knocked onto the edge of the concrete bench before he landed on the ground.'

Unconscious and with a cut and a swelling on his right temple, Lim was taken to Changi General Hospital. By the time he got there, he had lapsed into a coma.

Senior Prisons Officer Leong Say Shen, 31, from Tanah Merah Prison, reported the incident to the police only two days later.

Lim suffered internal bleeding in the brain and spinal cord, a fractured skull, pneumonia and partial paralysis.

He remained in the intensive care unit of the hospital for three months and was discharged only on Jan 14 this year, when he was transferred to the Cluster Medical Complex in Changi Prison Complex. Sabri could have been jailed for up to seven years.




Corpun file 16742

masthead
Today, Singapore, 28 September 2005

She was 5, in his care, and he exploited that

For six years, girl was forced to perform oral sex on family friend

By Ansley Ng

HE WAS a close family friend.

So close that he and his wife were trusted with the care of his friend's two young children.

But yesterday, a court heard how a 46-year-old man, obsessed with oral sex, had abused the young daughter of his friend since she was five years old.

Facing 11 charges, the former driver — who cannot be named to protect the identity of his two young daughters — was sentenced to 21 years in jail and eight strokes of the cane for repeatedly making the girl he was babysitting perform oral sex on him.

He continued to outrage her modesty from 1999 until this year.

The facts emerged only after the girl, now 11, attended sex-education classes at her school and began to wonder about her interaction with the man who used to look after her.

Curious, she even started visiting websites to learn more about the acts she had been asked to perform. It was only when her father questioned her about her visits to these websites this year that the truth tumbled out.

And the truth was horrific.

The accused became friends with the victim's father in February 1995 after the girl's family moved into a five-room flat at Jalan Bukit Merah.

Around May 1996, when the girl was just two years old, her parents asked the wife of the accused to babysit her. One year later, the girl's brother was born and he, too, was taken care of alongside his sister.

The babysitting arrangement ended in April 2000 but both families remained close and visited each other frequently.

One day in early 2000, when the girl was playing a game of hide-and-seek with the man and his two daughters, he took her to his master bedroom and made her perform oral sex on him.

He told her not to tell anyone about the act.

In March last year, the man again forced the girl to perform oral sex on him in his children's bedroom — while her parents were outside chatting with his wife.

And some time between last December and January this year, the accused — armed with a video camera — visited the girl's family, which had by then moved to a maisonette at Mei Ling Street. When he found that her parents were not at home, he told the girl to undress herself, and filmed her.

He then performed oral sex on her and stopped only when the girl said her mother would be home soon.

He was arrested on March 22 this year after the girl's father discovered the truth.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Shahla Iqbal, in pressing for a deterrent sentence, pointed out that the girl was barely five when the sexual assaults first started.

"He committed the heinous acts upon the young victim, who had not even attained an age where she could understand her sexuality properly," she said. DPP Iqbal argued that the accused had abused his position of trust and the friendship of the girl's parents.

He was a danger to society because he had abused the girl over a period of five years — proving that he was unable and unwilling to control himself, said DPP Iqbal.

The accused sobbed as a handwritten mitigation plea was read to Justice VK Rajah.

For having unnatural sex, the accused could have been sentenced to imprisonment for life. Instead, Justice Rajah sentenced him to 10 years' jail for each of the two charges. Another year in jail and eight strokes of the cane were added to this for outraging the girl's modesty.

Said Justice Rajah: "To satisfy his depravity, the accused even violated the sanctity of the victim's household when the parents were away."

Copyright MediaCorp Press Ltd. All rights reserved.




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