Singapore: 20-year-old accused of sexual offence faces new charges

Child abuse in Malaysia
Man arrested for sexual abuse (Representational Picture) Reuters

Following the complaint of a parent of a 13-year-old girl, police had arrested a 20-year-old man, who was found guilty of assaulting minor girls, befriended via social media. Now, the scope of the case is further widening with additional complaints pouring in against the man.

Earlier, the accused, known on social media as "Kai" to his victims, pleaded guilty to four charges, which included three of sexual penetration of a minor and one of sexual assault by penetration. But now officers have found another 13-year-old and two 16-year-old victims complaining over sexual offences, making seven new charges against the accused Goh Kar Aip.

He admitted to seven new charges on Tuesday, March 27, including charges for selling obscene images of nude females on WeChat and five new charges for sending images of his genitalia to the three victims via WhatsApp and Snapchat.

Reports stated that most of these offences took place after the 20-year-old accused was out on bail in May 2016. During the sentencing, the court will consider new charges along with the previous charges against Goh.

The parent of the minor, who filed the report, told the police that they suspected Goh for assaulting their daughter in February. During the court hearing on Tuesday, the prosecution urged for 15-years of imprisonment for the accused, including 15 strokes with a cane.

In his arguments, Deputy Public Prosecutor Ng Yiwen has brought up the topic of using social media as a platform, through which the accused used to befriend minor school girls, who showed their curiosity about the opposite gender.

Loh Lin Kok, the lawyer of the accused said that his client was a young boy, and aged between 16 and 18 when the offence took place.

Goh was arrested by the police, when the officers found that in December 2014, the accused threatened a 12-year-old girl saying that he would find her and tie her up if she failed to send him her nude photo. When a teacher discovered that several students from her school were victims of the accused, she informed the police in March 2016.

Section 375 of the Penal Code, which governs the law for rape or sexual assault, states that "any man[I1] who penetrates the vagina or a woman with his penis (a) without her consent; or (b) with or without her consent, when she is under 14 years of age, shall be guilty of an offence."

The law also stated that if the man rapes or tries to rape the woman by "(i) voluntarily caus[ing] hurt to [her]; or (ii) puts her in fear of death or hurt to herself," he will face up to 20 years in prison and 12 strokes at the very least.

This article was first published on March 28, 2018