Singapore

Man gets 22 years’ jail for sexually abusing young nephew

For nearly five years, a boy was sexually abused by his uncle, who started touching the victim inappropriately when he was about five or six, and progressed to more heinous acts.

The offences were revealed years later, when the boy, by then in secondary school, was caught taking an upskirt video and sent for counselling.

The boy broke down and told the counsellor he had been abused since he was in Kindergarten 2. The counsellor alerted the school's management, and a police report was made.

Yesterday, the perpetrator, a 54-year-old former technician, was sentenced to 22 years' jail after he pleaded guilty to one count each of aggravated sexual assault by penetration and attempted aggravated sexual assault by penetration.

Seven other charges - five counts of outrage of modesty against a person under 14 and two counts of aggravated sexual assault by penetration - were considered in sentencing.

The man cannot be named to protect the identity of the victim, who is now 16.

The High Court heard that the victim's parents had divorced around the time he was born, and he was taken care of by his maternal grandmother.

The boy lived in the same four-room Housing Board flat as the accused, who is married to the boy's maternal aunt. The other occupants were the accused's son and the victim's maternal uncle.

The court heard the boy called the accused "Baba", a way of addressing a father in Malay, and treated the man as a father.

The man began sexually exploiting the victim in 2010, when he touched the boy over his shorts when they were alone. Thinking his uncle was being playful, he laughed it off.

After the first incident, the man would touch the boy frequently when they were alone.

The man moved on to rubbing himself against the victim.

Some time between 2013 and 2014, the man told the boy to follow him to the toilet and made him perform oral sex on him. On another occasion, he tried to sodomise the boy.

The boy realised the actions were wrong only after attending sex education classes in 2017, but did not reveal the offences until he was caught taking the upskirt video in August 2018.

COURT & CRIME