SINGAPORE — A 33-year-old man who showed pornographic videos to his biological daughter and sexually abused her was on Monday (8 March) jailed for 15 years along with 15 strokes of the cane.
At the time of the offences in 2015, the victim was only four to five years old while the father was 27.
The culprit pleaded guilty at the High Court on Monday to one charge each of aggravated sexual assault by penetration and outrage of modesty.
Five other counts involving outrage of modesty, possession of obscene films and exhibiting obscene objects to a young person were considered in sentencing.
The father cannot be named to protect the victim's identity.
Showed victim pornographic videos
The father married the victim's mother in 2009 and the couple lived with his parents. After their marriage broke down around 2012, the couple separated and the mother, who had custody of the victim, moved out of the flat with the victim.
The victim would visit the father on weekends and stay over with him at his parents' flat. She would sleep on his bed.
On one weekend in early 2015, he was lying on his bed and watching an obscene video on his phone when the victim entered the room after her shower clad only in her towel. She was curious about what he was watching and he showed the video to her.
Shortly after, he outraged her modesty by performing a sex act on her.
"After the incident, the victim felt sad whenever she thought about what the accused did, and she asked herself why the accused had treated her in that way," said Deputy Public Prosecutor Daphne Lim.
Still, he continued to abuse her.
On another weekend, the father lay in bed watching a similar video while the victim slept next to him. When she woke up, he showed her the video and then told her to "follow the video" and made her perform a sex act on him.
Victim's mother found out about abuse
After this last occasion, the victim's mother noticed that she "was emotional and dull and not her usual happy self", said DPP Lim.
Upon questioning, the victim told the mother about what happened and also demonstrated actions suggestive of oral sex. Shocked, the mother confronted the father over the phone. He initially denied abusing the victim, but later admitted to doing so and promised not to repeat his actions.
The prosecutor told the court that although the mother wanted to report the matter to the police, she considered his promise and also "the fact that the victim appeared distressed and would not be able to see her father if the accused went to jail".
The mother also tried to prevent the victim from seeing the father or staying over at his unit, but later relented as she asked to see him.
In mid-2019, the mother sought help from a family service centre for the victim's behavioural issues. At one meeting, the mother revealed to a case worker about the abuse and was advised to make a police report. The father was arrested on 25 July, the same day the report was made.
The prosecutor urged Justice Valerie Thean to impose the sentence that was eventually meted out, in line with previous punishments for similar cases, "to send a clear signal to like-minded offenders of the courts’ continuing denunciation of such offences".
"The accused robbed his biological daughter of her innocence by exploiting her for his own sexual gratification when she was only four to five years old. Instead of protecting her from harm as a father should, he violated her dignity by performing increasingly intrusive sexual acts on her," said DPP Lim.
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