A 22-year-old army regular was yesterday jailed for six months and given three strokes of the cane for molest.
Jonathan Tan Weng Keong, who holds the rank of Second Sergeant in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF), had earlier pleaded guilty to molesting an 18-year-old Filipino student.
The court heard that Tan had bought some cigarettes from a convenience store at Rivervale Mall in Sengkang at about 1am on April 25 last year.
As he left the store, he noticed the victim walking towards a nearby multi-storey carpark and decided to follow her from a distance.
She was in her school uniform of blouse and skirt and wore a pair of shorts beneath her skirt.
When she sat on a kerb at the first level of the carpark, Tan approached her from behind and touched her head.
When she turned around, she saw Tan standing on her left. He then reached down and put his hand under her skirt and shorts to touch her.
When she screamed, Tan fled the scene and went home.
The girl called her boyfriend to tell him about the molest and a member of the public helped her to call the police.
Tan was arrested three days later outside Jurong Army Camp.
In mitigation, Tan's lawyer, Mr S. S. Dhillion, said his client had only N-level education and worked as a supply supervisor in the army.
He added that his client was actually concerned about the girl and had sat beside her in the carpark to check if she was all right. But out of impulse, he put his hand under her skirt.
Mr Dhillion also said that Tan was remorseful and ashamed of his actions, and that he might now be dismissed by the SAF.
For molest, Tan could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, caned or sentenced to a combination of punishments.
This article was first published on May 8, 2015.
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