SINGAPORE: Seven men will be charged in court on Monday (Oct 14) amid an increasing trend in outrage of modesty cases, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) said on Sunday.
The suspects - the youngest of whom is 26 and the oldest, 75 - were allegedly involved in separate cases of outrage of modesty between October 2018 and July this year, said police.
"Outrage of modesty cases have been on an increasing trend and remain a key concern for the police," said SPF.
"The police will continue to work closely with stakeholders and the community to prevent and deter outrage of modesty cases."
The victims in the seven cases were women aged 20 to 40, the news release said.
They reported being molested at various public places, from Orchard MRT station and a Sentosa monorail station, to a shopping centre along Orchard Road and a clinic along Tanjong Pagar Road.
A 31-year-old woman reported she was molested in a taxi, while a 27-year-old woman said she was molested inside a residence in Serangoon.
Another woman, 26, was molested along Gangsa Road.
WHAT TO DO IN A MOLEST INCIDENT
There are ways to guard against molesters, police said, such as being aware of one's surroundings and staying alert to anyone who seems suspicious.
"Avoid walking through dimly lit and secluded places or taking the lift with a stranger," police added.
Carrying a shrill alarm is another precaution one can take.
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Molest victims should seek help immediately from those around them, police said, and take note of the prominent features and attire of the suspect, as well as the direction they went in.
Police advised the public to call "999" as soon as possible to increase the chances of nabbing the suspect.
"If it is safe to do so, the victim or other witnesses of the crime may assist to detain the suspect while waiting for the police to arrive," added SPF.
Those found guilty of outrage of modesty may be jailed up to two years, fined or caned, or any combination of such punishments.
If the victim is below the age of 14, the maximum jail term is increased to five years.