From China to Geylang: Underage prostitute drugged, raped and beaten

Cleaner Low Kia How is among 14 men who have been charged on 4 September 2013 with paying for sex with a 17-year-old between 18 and 28 May 2013.

SINGAPORE - Before she became the prey of lustful men who prowl the lorongs of Geylang, the young girl from China underwent a hellish initiation of drugs, rape and beatings to turn her into a prostitute.

In sentencing three Singaporean men to 11 weeks' jail each for having commercial sex with the underage prostitute, District Judge Low Wee Ping on Wednesday repeatedly called the facts of the case "heartbreaking" and "horrific".

The three were among 24 men accused of having paid sex with her. More men are expected to face similar charges.

Explaining why the law takes a serious view of such offences, he told one of the accused, Low Kia How, 50, that by being at the end of the supply chain, "you are a consumer of what we call international trafficking of a minor for prostitution".

This is the heart-rending story of the girl's ordeal, as told in court on Wednesday:

Stuck with father's debts

When her father died from cancer in October 2011, he had racked up about 100,000 yuan (S$20,000) in loans from relatives and illegal moneylenders for his medical treatment.

Left to repay the debts, her mother became an odd job labourer, earning 3,000 yuan a month while the girl made about 1,000 yuan washing hair in a salon in her hometown in Shandong, China.

They could barely make ends meet, so the girl's employer Yi Hui suggested that she go to Macau to work in a casino.

In January this year, she went to Macau with Yi Hui, who introduced her to Tang Huiying.

When she found out the girl was only 17, she said she was too young to work in a casino, but she could solicit for VIP customers outside the casinos and earn a commission by helping the VIPs cash in money in exchange for chips

But first she would need to go to nearby Zhuhai on the mainland to learn how to solicit for customers from Tang's brother.

Sex slave

When the girl met Tang Huisheng, she told him she was 17. He drugged her with methamphetamine (Ice) and had sex with her while she was still in a stupor.

She became his sex slave. He would ask her for sex every few days. If she refused, he would beat her.

He continued to give her Ice. She was terrified of him.

He subsequently told her he would be taking her to Singapore to work as a prostitute so she could earn more money, adding he would be her pimp.

The girl found out he had been a pimp for many years. She refused and begged him to let her return home to her mother.

Instead, he locked her up in a room.

Jumped from 5th storey

After more than a week of confinement, she tried to escape by jumping out of the fifth-storey room.

She injured her back and legs and was caught by Tang. To punish her, he hit her on the back and chest while his sister hit her head.

Tang found out her hometown address by checking her passport. He then threatened that he would cause her mother trouble if she tried to escape again.

He confiscated her money, China identity card and mobile phone. He then bought air tickets to Singapore, promising to let her go home if she worked for two months as a prostitute here.

Caught for prostitution here

After they arrived here on May 16, Tang took her to Geylang and liaised with a local pimp known as Pang Pang.

She was told to stand around Geylang to get customers. Tang would stand near her in case she needed help. He also acted as lookout and helped her solicit for customers.

At the end of each day, he would take away all the money she made from prostituting herself.

She worked in Geylang from May 18 to June 1, when she was arrested at about 5.10pm on the suspicion that she had been providing commercial sex while being below the age of 18.

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