MALACCA: Underage love stories are causing a spike in the crime index in Malacca.
Juvenile couples are engaging in sexual relationships without understanding that under Section 376 of the Penal Code, statutory rape is defined as sexual intercourse with a girl under 16, regardless of whether consent is given.
Malacca police chief Deputy Comm Datuk Chuah Ghee Lye said such affairs had contributed to the rise in rape cases in the state.
"Parents and guardians should take care to instil the right values in teenagers and remind them that it is wrong to have intimate relationships at that young age," he told The Star.
Based on police statistics, there were 159 cases involving juvenile offenders in 2013, of which 31 were related to sexual offences.
Last year, 11 out of 147 cases involved statutory rape and youngsters aged between seven and 17.
DCP Chuah's statement came in light of the recent shocking case of a 14-year-old boy who was arrested by police for allegedly inciting an eight-year-old girl to commit "an act of gross indecency".
The girl's 45-year-old mother, who lodged a report on April 16, had discovered the children's three-month relationship after hearing about it from one of her daughter's friends.
When questioned, the Year Two pupil admitted to her mother about having indulged in sex with the boy since a month ago at the tuition centre they both went to.
On Jan 27 last year, a 34-year-old woman lodged a police report against a pre-schooler for allegedly forcing her five-year-old daughter to perform oral sex in the toilet of a kindergarten in Paya Rumput here during recess.
DCP Chuah noted that apart from rape cases, the number of student arrests over illegal motorcycle races had also increased by 71.6 per cent last year - from 74 individuals in 2013 to 127 in 2014.
"We have stepped up our efforts to combat crime among teenagers by working closely with various quarters as this is a worrying trend," he added.