SINGAPORE: The general practitioner on trial for raping his patient concocted an elaborate story that he had used saliva as a lubricant during a pelvic examination on his alleged victim, in case his DNA was found, the prosecution said on Friday (May 25).
Wee Teong Boo, 67, is accused of raping his female patient, then aged 23, in a late night consultation on Dec 30, 2015, at his clinic in Bedok. The doctor is married with five children.
Wee has maintained in his defence that he performed a pelvic examination on the patient to rule out the possibility of pelvic inflammatory disease, after she complained of frequent urination and genital itch.
This examination involved him inserting his fingers into her vagina. When Wee took the stand in his defence on May 10, he said this was communicated to the victim, and that she had given her consent.
He also admitted then that he did not use gloves or lubricant during the examination, as he had been “caught off-guard” by the patient’s sudden complaint of the itch in her genitals.
As prosecutors continued their cross-examination of Wee on the 11th day of the trial on Friday, it emerged that in two police statements Wee had given while he was in police custody immediately after his arrest, he had admitted to using his saliva as a lubricant during the pelvic examination.
When asked by Deputy Public Prosecutor Sharmila Sripathy-Shanaz why he had done so, Wee responded that “saliva is antibacterial”, and that he knew this as part of the “general knowledge” that he had.
“Normally, I would not do this at all,” Wee added. “But on that day ... I cannot explain it.”
When the DPP asked Wee why the evidence he gave in court differed from that in the police statements, Wee responded that he could not recall what he had said then.
Questioned further on this point by defence counsel Edmond Pereira during re-examination, Wee said that he had “actually forgotten much of the contents of the (police) statements.”
Mr Pereira then asked Wee to clarify what he had said earlier about saliva being antibacterial. Wee replied that saliva has “some antibacterial elements”.
“But that is no excuse for using it as a lubricant,” Wee added.
“GLARING INCONSISTENCIES” IN DOCTOR’S POLICE STATEMENTS, EVIDENCE IN COURT
The prosecution on Friday attacked Wee's defence as an "elaborate concoction", as they took the court through the police statements he had made following the alleged incident.
While Wee had signed every page of both statements, he had stressed that some parts were “not 100 per cent accurate”, and suggested that ASP Carol Ong, the police officer who recorded Wee’s second statement, had “planted” parts of the statement.
After repeated questioning from Justice Chua Lee Ming, Wee admitted that he had given the statements voluntarily.
Another discrepancy highlighted by prosecutors was Wee’s testimony in court that he had suffered from erectile dysfunction and low libido.
However, in one of the police statements, Wee had indicated clearly that he did not have any erectile dysfunction.
When the DPP asked Wee about this, Wee responded that the erectile dysfunction “did not cross his mind” at the time he had given the statement, as it “did not bother him” then.
He added that he had consulted a urologist to get a report on his condition three days after he was released from police custody. The urologist’s report was later admitted as evidence in court.
In summing up the prosecution’s case, DPP Sripathy-Shanaz contended that Wee’s claim of erectile dysfunction was an “afterthought”, and described his version of events as an “elaborate concoction”.
She pointed out that Wee had testified that he was able to have sex with his wife in 2015, and he had only engaged a urologist to “get a way out”.
She also cited the “glaring inconsistencies” between Wee’s testimony in court and the police statements he had signed, noting that there was also no mention of pelvic inflammatory disease in either of the police statements, or in Wee’s notes on the patient.
“I put it to you that your entire claim that you performed a vaginal examination to exclude pelvic inflammatory disease is an utter lie,” she said, adding that Wee had “concocted (an) elaborate story” on using saliva as lubricant during the examination in case his DNA had been found in the alleged victim’s private parts.
“You had no qualms about raping her because she did not have an infected vagina,” she said.
The trial continues on Jul 10, with the defence expected to call nine more witnesses, including Wee’s wife and his clinic’s nurses.