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Singapore

Man admits raping daughter, sexually assaulted her from the age of 3 and showed her porn

Man admits raping daughter, sexually assaulted her from the age of 3 and showed her porn

Photo illustration of a child in distress. (Photo: Jeremy Long)

SINGAPORE: After taking a shower with his young daughter as she was scared by television scenes of drowning, a man realised he was a paedophile and there was "no turning back".

He began sexually abusing her when she was three and continued to do so for seven-and-a-half years, with the offences escalating to rape. He also showed her pornography.

The crimes, which the prosecution slammed as "heinous", came to light only when his daughter's friend talked about his inappropriate behaviour during a confession at her first communion.

The 44-year-old man, who cannot be named due to gag orders protecting the victim's identity, pleaded guilty on Friday (Mar 26) to three charges of statutory rape. 

Another 19 charges, including aggravated sexual assault by penetration, molestation and showing obscene objects to a young person, will be considered in sentencing, which was adjourned to a later date.

The court heard that the man's wife, who is now 42, gave birth to the victim in 2008. They moved to Singapore subsequently and lived in rented condominiums.

When the girl was between three and seven years old, she watched scenes on television of people drowning while swimming and became afraid of taking showers alone.

Her father began showering with her, but "developed a sexual desire for the victim" in the process. According to him, it was at this point that he realised he was a paedophile and there was "no turning back".

SEXUALLY ABUSED HER WHEN HIS WIFE WAS NOT AROUND

The man began molesting his daughter and making her perform sex acts on him. The sexual abuse increased in frequency after they moved to a new home, and took place when his wife was at work, out of the country or not at home.

He would show his daughter adult and child pornography before sexually assaulting her. This went on for seven-and-a-half years between December 2011 and June 2019.

The girl did not tell anyone about the assault as she did not want her parents to divorce. Her father knew that she was not a willing party, as she would avoid looking at him when he assaulted her.

The man also sexually assaulted a friend of his daughter, a girl who is now 13 and who was named in court documents only as V2. When his daughter was elsewhere in the house, the man would kiss V2 on the lips and tell her to keep it a secret.

On one occasion, he sat between his daughter and V2 as they watched a movie and molested both of them. Eventually, V2 stopped going to their home to avoid him.

Between April and May 2019, the man was home with his daughter, his infant son and a maid. The victim was in her bedroom reading a novel when her father entered the room.

He showed her pornography on his phone before molesting his daughter, who was about 11 at the time. He then raped her even though she said: "I don't want to."

By the accused's estimation, he raped his daughter more than 10 times but fewer than 20 times in all.

DAUGHTER'S FRIEND EXPOSES HIS CRIMES

In June 2019, V2 was preparing to undergo her first communion overseas when she was asked to confess her sins. She revealed that the accused had behaved inappropriately with her in 2017. Her parents took her to lodge a police report when she returned to Singapore.

The police began investigating the crimes committed against V2 and went to the accused's home in July 2019 and found his daughter alone at home.

When they spoke to her, they discovered that she had also been sexually assaulted and arrested her father later that evening.

Police found content related to young and prepubescent female children in his seized devices, and links found saved in his phone contained material pertaining to terms like "incest love" and "lewd posts".

The victim's mother, who has since divorced the offender, later informed investigators that she discovered three child erotica stories in his email inbox.

A psychiatric report from the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) found that the offender has paedophilic disorder, where he has recurrent sexual urges or behaviour involving sexual activities with prepubescent children.

From January to June 2018, he had "a period of distress" due to work stress, the court heard.

However, IMH found no substantive contributory link between his disorder and the offences, as both his cognitive functioning and his volitional or emotional capability to break the law and act on his sexual desires were not significantly impaired.

HE FELL UTTERLY SHORT OF ROLES AS A FATHER: PROSECUTION

Prosecutors called for at least 30 years' jail and 24 strokes of the cane, saying that every young girl looks up to her father as her protector, guardian and provider, but the accused "fell utterly short of these roles".

He robbed her of her childhood and innocence, and she "tolerated years of abuse despite knowing what the accused did to her was wrong, and disliking it", they said.

She obeyed him each time he "wheedled her into compliance" and she continues to write him letters in remand to tell him that she loves and misses him, said Deputy Public Prosecutors Yvonne Poon and Lim Ying Min.

"For the bulk of her life, every single home in Singapore that the victim resided in has been the site of some odious sexual activity with the accused. She was not safe from him even in her own bedroom," they said.

"Throughout this period of up to seven-and-a-half years, the accused made the victim choose, time and time again, between the sanctity of her person versus her affection for her father and the wholeness of her family."

They added that no one should be made to shoulder such a terrible burden, much less a child as young as the victim.

The offender was also "deliberate and systematic" in his crimes, planning his assault for when his wife was not home. He also exposed his daughter to child pornography, which the victim perceived as videos of "a child having sex with her father".

The repeated showing of such videos demonstrates that the accused "had clearly sought to corrupt the victim's innocence and to normalise and desensitise the victim to the heinous nature of his incestuous acts", said prosecutors.

Defence lawyer Amarjit Singh said 30 years would be "too crushing a sentence", asking instead for between 24 and 26 years. He said his client's wife has since divorced him and he has left everything to her.

Parties will return next month for sentencing. 

Source: CNA/ll(ac)

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