A 23-year-old serial molester, whose latest victim was a 12-year-old girl, has been sentenced to 11 weeks in jail.
Before the incident last year, student Phua Sze Son had already been convicted of three molestation offences, and had been punished with probation and reformative training.
But that did not stop him from offending again on Sept 21, when he sat next to his victim, who was dressed in a school T-shirt and shorts, on a public bus.
Palm facing downwards, he slid his left hand under the victim's thigh and repeatedly wriggled his fingers against her shorts.
Feeling uncomfortable, the primary school pupil tried to leave but had to use her bag to force her way out of the seat as Phua blocked her way to the aisle.
Calling for a jail term of more than nine weeks, Deputy Public Prosecutor Terence Szetoh said Phua had continued to wriggle his fingers even when his victim, who was vulnerable given her age and the fact she was alone that day, tried to move away. He also pointed out that the offence took place on public transport.
District Judge Shawn Ho, in handing down the sentence yesterday, noted that the young girl had been traumatised by the incident and was in tears when she alerted her mother after rushing home.
He also noted that this was the second time Phua, who now has five convictions for molestation since 2006, had molested a girl under 14 years of age.
Still, the judge took into consideration Phua's guilty plea and the remorse he showed by telling the court he was sorry and would change his ways.
The punishment for outraging the modesty of someone under the age of 14 is a jail term of up to five years, a fine or caning, or any combination of the sentences.
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