A 44-year-old man in Singapore has been sentenced to 24 years’ jail and the statutory maximum of 24 strokes of the cane after pleading guilty to three charges of rape.
The Straits Times (ST) reported that the three charges the offender pleaded guilty to were for acts committed against his then-14-year-old biological daughter between October and December 2019, though he started molesting the victim in May 2019, and started committing other penetrative sexual acts and rape in September of the same year.
Eight other charges — one for rape, three for outrage of modesty and four for sexual assault by penetration — were taken into consideration during sentencing.
The offender cannot be named due to a gag order to protect the victim.
He has four children — three daughters aged between 13 and 20, and a 10-year-old son — according to TODAY . ST noted that the victim is the second oldest child.
ST reported that the offender started molesting the victim in May 2019. He started committing other penetrative sexual acts and rape in September of the same year.
In October 2019, he entered the victim’s bedroom while the rest of the family was asleep. TODAY reported that the victim shared the room with her younger sister at the time.
The man molested, sexually assaulted, and raped the victim.
CNA said that the victim’s sister was asleep on the mattress next to her during the assault.
He repeated the offence in November 2019, again when the rest of the family was asleep.
On Dec. 2, 2019, he did so once again between 6am and 7am but was caught by his wife.
She saw him kneeling next to her daughter’s bed naked from the waist down, and hit him, asking how he could do such a thing, according to CNA .
The victim, along with her younger sister who woke up due to the commotion, started crying. The offender apologised to his wife and left the room.
The victim was reported to have pretended to be asleep during the assaults.
Prosecutors also said she was afraid of her father, and did not resist him as she thought he was stronger than her.
Abuse stopped after victim mother’s intervention
TODAY noted that the victim’s mother had been undergoing treatment for lymphoma — cancer of the blood cells — since November 2019.
The victim decided against reporting the sexual assaults as she felt that her family was financially dependent on her father, and did not want to upset her sick mother.
After witnessing what happened on Dec. 2, 2019, the victim’s mother asked all four children to sleep in the same room.
The offender stopped his sexual assaults.
On Sep. 1 2020, the victim’s mother was hospitalised. The offender entered his children’s bedroom that night and sat on the victim’s mattress.
He left the room after being startled by the sound of his son sneezing.
The victim texted her mother the next day, and recounted what happened.
The victim’s mother confronted her husband about what had happened after she was discharged a few days later, but he did not explain himself, according to ST .
On Sep. 16 2020, the woman made a police report with the victim as she wanted to apply for a personal protection order for her children against her husband.
It was then where the offender’s assaults were brought to light.
ST reported that defence counsel Vigneesh Nainar said that his client is “truly apologetic and ashamed over what he has done”, and that he has been “condemned” by his family members.
Nainar added that the man feels “remorse” and understands that his children “despise” him and do not want to keep in contact. He asked the court to consider this in meting out the sentence as the "loss in itself is a punishment for him”.
Deputy Public Prosecutors Dwayne Lum, Shen Wanqin and Benjamin Samynathan cited the offender’s abuse of trust and the vulnerability of the young victim as aggravating factors, pointing out that the family home was the victim’s “only place of refuge and security”.
TODAY reported that the victim was also exposed to the risk of unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases as the offender did not wear a condom.
Samynathan pointed out that the victim suffered in silence as she had no power to retaliate or resist.
During sentencing, High Court judge Dedar Singh Gill called the offender’s actions a “heinous crime” which “creates turmoil in the family”.
“It goes without saying that rape is a serious crime. The worst type of rape, however, is where a father rapes his biological daughter who, because of her age, is a vulnerable victim.”
For each count of rape and sexual assault by penetration, the man could have been jailed up to 20 years and been fined or caned.
Each count of outrage of modesty carries a punishment of up to two years' jail, fine, caning or a combination of any of these punishments.
ST reported that the victim and her siblings are being cared for by relatives. Her mother passed away in March 2021.
Top photos by Mothership
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