SINGAPORE: A 28-year-old man who was nabbed for molesting two boys was sentenced to 14 weeks' jail on Monday (Jun 1) after admitting to touching other boys in school uniform on multiple other occasions.
Machiyoshi Lim Dao Jian pleaded guilty to one charge of using criminal force on a 14-year-old boy to outrage his modesty, with a second charge of molesting a 15-year-old boy taken into consideration.
The court heard that Lim and the younger boy, a student in school uniform, boarded bus 976 in Teck Whye on the afternoon of Mar 16 this year.
The bus was not crowded and the 14-year-old boy sat in the last row, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Derek Ee.
Lim saw the boy sitting behind and sat on the seat beside him, before placing his hand on the victim's seat.
He began molesting the boy by touching his buttocks. The teen said "excuse me" and moved his right leg away from Lim.
However, Lim molested the boy again a few minutes later, placing his hand on the chair so that the boy sat on top of it.
Feeling something under his buttock, the boy turned around and saw Lim's hand under it. Feeling disgusted, he said "excuse me" again, stood up and went to the bus captain and told him that Lim had molested him.
The 37-year-old bus captain Hao Junling immediately locked the bus down and called the police, saying: "One pax complained of molest. The bus locked down already."
Lim tried to alight the bus but was not allowed to do so, until the police arrived.
He later admitted to touching the victim's buttock for five to seven minutes, and said he "began having the inclination to touch young boys on public buses since October 2019".
NOT THE FIRST TIME MOLESTING BOYS ON BUSES
"He stated that this was not the first time he had touched boys inside a bus, and that he usually touched boys who were in their school uniform shorts or Physical Education shorts," said the prosecutor.
He did this by sitting beside them on public buses and touching their thighs, and is unable to remember the number of times he did so, the court heard.
His second charge which was taken into consideration involves molesting a 15-year-old boy on bus 187 on the morning of Mar 11.
Lim was assessed at the Institute of Mental Health between Mar 27 and May 21, with a consultant finding that he was not suffering from any psychotic disorder and was not of unsound mind when he committed the offences.
However, the consultant Dr Lee Kim Huat Jason said that Lim's case could be described as featuring a maladaptive coping mechanism to deal with emotional stress and social isolation.
Dr Lee noted that paraphilic disorders should remain on the list of differential or possible diagnoses, given Lim's modus operandi such as his targeted approach and victim selection.
The prosecutor asked for at least 14 weeks' jail, noting that there was "continuous touching" and a second victim.
"The modus operandi in this case shows that the accused has a targeted approach and specifically chooses his victims," said Mr Ee.
Defence lawyer James Ow Yong asked for three months' jail instead, saying that his client "is labouring under significant social stress and social isolation".
"He is not saying there is a mental condition present," said the lawyer, adding that Lim is committed to following up with IMH's recommended treatment.
For using criminal force on a person to outrage his modesty, Lim could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, caned, or given any combination of these punishments.