Singapore

Mum of raped girl says: 'We are closer now'

The mother of a young girl who was allegedly raped by a man she met on a mobile app said she was angry at what happened to her daughter.

"She's so young, only 12 years old," she said on the stand in a trial against the man accused of raping the girl.

The girl's mother recalled that on the day of the alleged rape on May 29, 2012, her daughter, who was then in Seconday 1, came home unusually late and headed straight for the shower.

When she asked her daughter why she was two hours late, the girl merely replied that she had been in school.

Less than a week later, on June 3, 2012, the woman's estranged husband called to say that their daughter had posted photographs of her private parts online.

When the woman confronted the girl about the nude photographs, the girl confessed to meeting Lee Seow Peng, who used the moniker 'Lucifer', on the day she came home late.

“She told me this guy brought her to Chinese Garden and they had sex there in the car," the mother told the court on Thursday (Dec 17), the second day of the trial.

"She confirmed after I asked her three times."

Deputy Public Prosecutor Jasmine Chin-Sabado asked the woman why she needed to question her daughter three times.

“Because accusing a person is not right and she had to tell the truth. (My daughter) thought twice and confirmed that it was true,” she said.

The mother broke down numerous times during her testimony and would pause each time to compose herself.

She also described her daughter as a very quiet girl who did not share her problems with her family back in 2012.

“When I asked her about school or her friends, she will tell me everything is fine and not elaborate how she feels,” she said.

But since the alleged incident, she said her daughter has opened up more to her.

“We are now closer. She knows what she has done. She now shares her happiness and sadness (with) me and whatever problems she encounters.”

Earlier in the day, the girl's father also took the stand as a prosecution witness.

He too choked up several times while giving evidence. "As a father, I couldn't protect her. I am very sad."

When Lee, who is representing himself, cross-examined the parents, he thanked each of them for appearing in court and said he was sorry they had to recount these “embarrassing” moments.

Lee faces up to 20 years' jail and 12 strokes of the cane if found guilty of rape. He is also charged with sexually grooming a girl under 16 and attempting to procure the commission of an obscene or indecent act by the young girl.

Lee asked each parent if they were aware that their daughter had had sex with her previous boyfriend.

Both parents said no.

Lee then asked the girl’s mother if she was aware that he had sent encouraging messages to the girl, telling her to study hard and play the piano well.

The mother retorted: “She didn’t learn the piano.”

Read the full report in our print edition on Dec 19.

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