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Singapore

Man gets jail, fine for filming student changing in NTU hall, rummaging through laundry

Man gets jail, fine for filming student changing in NTU hall, rummaging through laundry

Laundry in a washing machine. (File photo: iStock)

SINGAPORE: Frustrated over a dispute with his fiancee, a man drove to a Nanyang Technological University (NTU) residential hall and rummaged through laundry in search of women's shorts.

Poh Wee Lee, 33, wanted to find "particularly striking or colourful shorts" that he could look at to "relax", court documents said.

On Friday (Jan 28), Poh was sentenced to six weeks in jail and fined S$1,000 after pleading guilty last month.

He was convicted on one count each of criminal trespass and voyeurism, with a third charge taken into consideration.

The court heard that he was found unsuitable for a mandatory treatment order.

VIDEO FOUND ON PHONE

After midnight on Oct 9, 2020, Poh ended work and decided to take a breather by riding his motorcycle to the university.

He snuck into the laundry room of an NTU residential hall, opened a washing machine and started rummaging through clothes, looking for women's shorts.

A 22-year-old female student came into the room and saw Poh looking through her laundry at about 2.30am. She and two male friends gave chase and managed to detain Poh when he tried to run away.

After his arrest, Poh's two mobile phones were seized. A 40-second video of an NTU student changing in her room was found in one of the phones. 

Investigations showed that Poh had gone to an NTU residential hall on Sep 15, 2020 sometime before midnight, chanced upon the woman changing and recorded it on his phone.

"DEEPLY REMORSEFUL"

Defence lawyer Jared Chen of Drew and Napier said his client was "deeply remorseful" for his actions and felt that he had let down his loved ones.

He said an Institute of Mental Health psychiatrist found that Poh suffered from adjustment disorder arising from the case, and also reported suicidal ideation.

Poh suffered from poor sleep, tiredness and anger issues after his arrest, and was advised by the psychiatrist not to drive given his passive suicidal ideation, he added.

However, he was assessed to be unsuitable for a mandatory treatment order, where offenders undergo psychiatric treatment as an alternative to imprisonment.

Mr Chen sought a fine of S$500 instead of a custodial sentence for the criminal trespass, in order for his client to continue psychiatric treatment.

The prosecution asked for six to eight weeks' jail for the act of voyeurism, and a short custodial sentence for the criminal trespass.

A bail extension was granted as Poh successfully requested that his sentence be deferred to Feb 11.

Mr Chen said this was because his client wanted to spend his first Chinese New Year as a married couple with his wife, and wanted to care for his mother, who was diagnosed with COVID-19 two days ago.

Source: CNA/dv(rw)

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