A 23-YEAR-OLD beautician leaving for work one morning was waylaid by her 27-year-old landlord, who carried her into his room and raped her.
During her ordeal of almost three hours, she managed to make two phone calls and send text messages to two co-workers in desperate pleas for help.
The Malaysian woman was rescued after the police were alerted and came knocking on the door.
Yesterday, the landlord, a married Chinese national who works here as a technician, was sentenced to 11 and a half years' jail and six strokes of the cane.
The small-built man pleaded guilty to a charge of rape and also a charge of making an obscene film - for recording a 28-minute video of the rape on his phone.
The High Court heard that he had rented the Bishan flat, which was partitioned into rooms that he sublet to others.
He and his wife lived in one room.
He met the victim, who is married, in December 2012 through the instant messaging application WeChat.
He helped her find a job here and offered to let her stay with him for free.
She arrived in February 2013 and stayed at the flat with a roommate.
Soon, her landlord professed interest in her.
On the morning of May 27, 2013, he sent her a text message asking to speak to her in his room.
She said she was in a rush and suggested they talk outside but he blocked her from leaving.
He carried her into his room, threw her on the bed, closed the door, and forced himself on her after ordering her not to scream.
When she pleaded with him to let her go to work, he told her to call in sick and said he would let her go if she consented to sex.
She tried to shout for help but he covered her mouth and told her he had killed people before.
During the rape, she reached for her mobile phone, dialled a colleague's number and made noises, hoping to be heard.
At one point, the landlord got a text from the beauty salon, asking where she was.
He replied she was sick.
About two hours after the first call, the victim dialled her manager, who heard crying and a scream.
A while later, she sent a text to the manager to save her but got a text back to have a good rest.
It was only when the victim said she was being raped that the police were called in.
Yesterday, the man's lawyer, Ms Diana Ngiam, said he cared for the victim and had committed the offence impulsively.
But Deputy Public Prosecutor Lin Yinbing said there was no intimate relationship between them; they were tenant and landlord.
She added that the victim had thoughts of suicide and her marriage had also been affected.
This article was first published on March 07, 2015.
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