Singapore

Man told daughter to take sleeping pills and lie to cops

A man told his 11-year-old daughter to consume sleeping pills after he had a dispute with his estranged wife in April 2018.

A district court heard that he wanted to show the woman that their marital disputes had caused the girl to feel stressed.

The girl complied and ended up losing consciousness. She was warded in KK Women's and Children's Hospital (KKH) for more than a month.

The man later told the girl to lie to the police and tell an investigating officer she had voluntarily consumed the pills as she wanted to kill herself. Again, the girl complied.

But four months later, she told the truth to a social worker.

The 40-year-old Singaporean, who cannot be named to protect his daughter's identity, pleaded guilty in court yesterday to one count each of ill-treating a child and intentionally perverting the course of justice.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Joshua Phang said the man lived with his daughter in a Toa Payoh flat. His wife lived in another flat in Woodlands.

On April 7, 2018, the girl sent her mother a text message that she was unwell and asked the woman to pick her up from Toa Payoh so they could go to a doctor together. The woman replied and told the girl to take a taxi to Woodlands.

The girl then decided to stay home with her younger brother and paternal grandmother.

Her father later told her to retrieve a bottle of her grandmother's sleeping pills, and to consume some of the pills.

When the girl lost consciousness, the man took her in a taxi to his wife's flat. He laid the girl outside his wife's home and knocked on the door at around 3.45am on April 8, 2018.

An ambulance arrived soon after and rushed the girl to KKH.

As instructed, the girl lied to Sergeant Dickson Lek on April 18, 2018, claiming that she had wanted to take her own life.

On June 16, 2018, the police told her by post that no further action would be taken against her. The man's offences finally came to light in August 2018 when his daughter revealed the truth to a social worker.

The man's bail was set at $15,000 on Wednesday. He will be sentenced on Dec 9.

For intentionally perverting the course of justice, an offender can be jailed for up to seven years and fined. - THE STRAITS TIMES

COURT & CRIME