Man jailed for sexually assaulting niece, 10
She shared a close relationship with her aunt and uncle, even calling them "mummy" and "papa".
But the girl, then 10, was betrayed by her "papa" when he sexually assaulted her while she was staying over at his flat in 2013.
Yesterday, the girl's uncle was sentenced to eight years and six months in jail and eight strokes of the cane.
He pleaded guilty to one count of sexual assault by digital penetration.
Another charge of using criminal force on a young personand intending to outrage her modesty was taken into consideration during sentencing yesterday.
The uncle, now 46, is married to the girl's maternal aunt.
He cannot be named to protect the girl's identity.
Investigations revealed that the girl would often sleep over at the couple's flat during the school holidays and long weekends, sharing a queen-sized bed with them.
The court heard that on Aug 15, 2013, the girl slept over as they were supposed to travel to Desaru, Malaysia, for a holiday the following morning.
The uncle consumed alcohol before returning home around 1am on Aug 16 and joined his niece in bed.
He became sexually aroused and started cuddling the girl whom he thought was fast asleep on the bed.
He then attacked her and stopped only when she cried out in pain and wriggled her body to let him know she was awake.
The girl told her mother about the incident a week later. Her mother then told the girl's aunt, who is her sister.
They agreed that the girl would no longer see the couple.
The girl's father then found out about it and at his insistence, his wife lodged a police report about a month after the incident.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Sharmila Sripathy-Shanaz told the court that the most aggravating factor in the case was the man's abuse of his position of trust.
She added that the uncle had not surrendered himself following the offence, and had the police report not been made, would have been content to pretend that nothing was amiss.