SINGAPORE: Under the pretence of asking for help, he brought his 12-year-old victim to a staircase landing.
There, he pulled down the boy’s shorts and later grabbed his genitals without consent.
For that, Mohamed Taha Ahmad, 60, was sentenced to 14 months in jail for the outrage of modesty of a victim under 14.
The court heard that on the morning of Oct 22 last year, Mohamed Taha - who appeared in court with a walking cane - approached the victim at the Bedok bus interchange and discovered that the boy intended to visit a friend.
He later boarded the same bus as his victim, and chatted with him about his school during the journey.
The 12-year-old - who cannot be named due to a gag order to protect his identity - later alighted at a bus stop in Bedok North, and Mohamed Taha followed suit.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Niranjan Ranjakunalan noted that the accused did not live in the area, and his sole reason for alighting there was to follow the victim.
Mohamed Taha asked the boy if he had time to chat, and brought him to the void deck of a block of flats.
“There, the accused asked the victim if he could help him with something without specifying the help allegedly required,” said Mr Niranjan.
Mohamed Taha and the victim then boarded a lift together, where the 60-year-old asked him what size his underwear was, shocking the boy.
The accused then offered the victim S$10 to allow the accused to check the size of his underwear and the victim took the money from the accused without saying anything, the prosecution noted.
After exiting the lift on the 12th floor, Mohamed Taha asked the 12-year-old to sit at a staircase landing and - after checking to make sure no one else was around - asked him to “open”.
The victim did not know what Mohamed Taha meant, and the older man then pulled the victim’s shorts and underwear from the front to look at his exposed genitals.
The boy pulled himself away and asked Mohamed Taha what he was doing, then the older man pulled the victim’s shorts and underwear from the back to look at his exposed buttocks.
The boy moved away, telling the accused that he did not like what he was doing. Following that, without warning, the accused grabbed the victim's genitals once over his shorts, said the prosecutor.
He added that this shocked the victim, who then pushed Mohamed Taha’s hand away, telling the older man no and wanting to return the S$10 he had been given.
The 60-year-old asked the victim to follow him to another staircase landing but the victim declined, taking the stairs down to the void deck of the block as he did not want to take the lift with the accused.
The next day, the 12-year-old told a teacher at his school what had happened, and the teacher advised him to lodge a police report.
Mohamed Taha was arrested on Oct 28 following investigations.
For the outrage of modesty of a victim under the age of 14 years of age, he could be jailed up to five years, fined or both. He cannot be caned as he is over the age of 50.