Man on trial for raping social escort after posing as police officer

Man on trial for raping social escort after posing as police officer

High Court Supreme Court 03
File photo of the Supreme Court in Singapore (Photo: Jeremy Long)

SINGAPORE: After arranging to meet a social escort in a hotel room for a fee, a man allegedly impersonated a police officer and raped the woman after brandishing a knife.

Ng Yi Yao, 32, went on trial on Tuesday (Mar 16) for two counts of aggravated rape and two counts of aggravated sexual assault by penetration. He faces a fifth charge of impersonating a police officer, which he intends to plead guilty to.

The court heard that Ng had hired the services of a 25-year-old woman, whose identity is protected by gag order. She worked as a part-time social escort in February 2019 and provided sexual services to clients while holding a separate full-time job and studying for a degree.

Her agent, a person she knew as "Kelvin" and whom she had never met, arranged appointments with clients for her.

On Feb 21, 2019, Kelvin told the woman that he had a job for her at Harbour Ville Hotel at 8.15pm that night and asked her to check in to the room. He said the client would pay her S$450, adding that she might have a second client at 9pm that night, said the prosecution.

The woman went to the hotel and booked a room for two hours at about 8pm that night, paying S$40 for the accommodation. She waited in the room and Ng appeared, identifying himself as Ivan.

According to the prosecution's case, Ng showered and came out of the toilet naked. However, when the woman asked him for payment, he put his clothes back on and identified himself as a police officer, flashing what the woman thought was a flip-card holder at her.

He asked her for her phone and NRIC, and the woman complied as she was afraid, said prosecutors.

Ng purportedly began an audio recording and told the woman there was a police operation. When the woman told him she had another client that night, Ng used her phone to tell Kelvin that she was not feeling well and to cancel the subsequent job. He did not answer subsequent calls from Kelvin.

Ng called the receptionist for a change of rooms, and continued to pretend to be a police officer, said the prosecutors. He allegedly made remarks that the woman understood to mean that she had to perform sex acts on him to leave freely.

She rejected him and asked for his police ID as she suspected that Ng was not who he said he was, but he refused to show it to her.

At about 10pm, the woman sent a message to her friend: "Bro I can't make it tonight have smth on." This was a signal that something was amiss, and that she was in trouble.

Ng allegedly changed his tone after refusing to show his police ID to the woman, and told her to switch off the room lights or he would hurt her. The woman saw him holding a red Swiss Army knife and switched off the lights, before complying with his request to remove her clothes.

THE ALLEGED RAPE

According to the prosecution's case, Ng raped the victim after this. She complied as she was afraid of the knife she had seen. She was also forced to perform sex acts on Ng, and did not consent to any of the acts throughout, the prosecution said.

After the alleged sexual assault, Ng admitted that he was not a police officer, said Deputy Public Prosecutors Mohamed Faizal, Selene Yap and Tessa Tan.

He proposed moving in to stay with her, but the woman tried to end the conversation by saying she needed to return home for assignments. After Ng got her phone number and took photos of the woman's NRIC, he paid S$20 for the room and gave the woman another S$40.

He insisted on taking a cab home with her, said the prosecutors. After paying the taxi driver, he walked the woman to her flat and kissed her outside.

Immediately after entering her home past midnight, the woman called her friend and told him she was raped. Her friend went over quickly and the woman called the police.

Ng was arrested later that day. The woman's DNA was found on his underwear, and he was assessed at the Institute of Mental Health and found to be fit to plead.

A medical report issued in October 2019 found no strong evidence to suggest a diagnosis of erectile dysfunction.

The prosecution will lead evidence from 38 witnesses to prove the charges against Ng. The trial opened on Wednesday with the woman testifying in-camera.

If convicted of aggravated rape, he could be jailed for between eight and 20 years and given at least 12 strokes of the cane.

​​​​​​​Editor's note: An earlier version of the story said the accused was a RedMart delivery driver at the time of the alleged offences; RedMart has clarified that he only worked for them five days before the alleged incidents.

Source: CNA/ll(ac)

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