Tourist raped after celebrating sister's birthday

Brutal: The victim was followed by a stranger into a lift where she was attacked. She was then forced to a staircase landing where she was raped.

SINGAPORE - Exactly a month after she came here to visit her sister, the 39-year-old Filipina was raped.

She was in a lift returning to her sister's Outram flat on April 22, 2011, when a man physically assaulted her, before taking her to a staircase landing and sexually assaulting her.

On Tuesday, that man, Abdul Razeef Abdul Majeed, 23, was sentenced to 12 1/2 years' jail and 14 strokes of the cane for the offence.

In sentencing, Justice Chan Seng Onn called Abdul Razeef's assault brutal, that he subjugated her and put her in fear of her safety so he could rape her, penetrate her mouth with his private parts, and repenetrate her without her consent.

"(It was a process) which no doubt upset her and violated her dignity and womanhood," he said.

She came from the Philippines to visit her sister in Singapore.

But she ended up being brutally attacked and raped exactly a month later.

The 39-year-old Filipina was returning to her sister's Outram flat on April 22, 2011, when a stranger followed her into the lift and stood next to her.

As the lift went up, he said something that she did not understand.

Suddenly, he hugged her and she pushed him away.

He then rained punches on her head and face as she collapsed on the ground, her arms trying to protect her head.

When the lift doors opened, he forced her to go to a staircase landing, where he raped her.

On Tuesday, Abdul Razeef Abdul Majeed, 23, was sentenced to 12½ years in jail and 14 strokes of the cane. He had been charged with two counts of aggravated rape and one count of aggravated sexual assault by penetration.

The prosecution proceeded with one count of aggravated rape, with the other two charges taken into consideration during sentencing.

CCTV

Unknown to him, the delivery man's attack on his victim was captured by the lift's closed-circuit TV. Abdul Razeef watched impassively as the footage was shown on Tuesday in court.

The victim had gone to a Race Course Road restaurant the night before to celebrate the birthday of her sister with a group of friends. Her sister is a permanent resident here.

They left the restaurant at about 3am and went to East Coast Park to continue celebrating.

After a while, she felt tired and decided to go home first. She shared a cab with a friend and alighted alone at Chin Swee Road to walk back to the Outram block at slightly past 5am.

She saw Abdul Razeef at the lift lobby and he stood next to her while she waited for the lift.

After he attacked her in the lift, the doors opened at her floor. He then placed his right arm across her shoulder and pressed it across her neck.

He told her not to make any noise or he would kill her before forcing her out of the lift. But she managed to break free and ran.

He caught up with her before she could reach the stairs. He grabbed her by the hair and told her to stop running.

Still holding her hair, he led her to the staircase landing and told her to remove her shorts or he would kill her.

She obeyed out of fear. He told her to lie down and make him happy. He also asked her to remove her panties, but she refused.

He unzipped his pants, exposing his private parts. She lay on the staircase and did as she was told, fearful he would beat her again.

He then raped her. Afterwards, he made her perform oral sex on him before raping her a second time.

After he left, she got dressed, went back to her sister's flat and called her sister, who was still at the beach, to tell her what had happened.

After the call, she went to the bathroom to wash herself as she felt dirty.

When her sister got home, she saw the victim sitting on the sofa crying. She had bruises around her eyes and lips. The sister called the police.

The victim's medical report stated that she had given birth to four children in normal deliveries.

Abdul Razeef was arrested three days later when the police raided his flat.

They had tracked him down after his victim identified him when the police showed her a series of photographs. The court was told that he had previous convictions for fraudulent possession of property and Customs offences.

Abdul Razeef's lawyer, Mr Shashi Nathan, said in mitigation that the secondary school dropout had been depressed over a recent break-up with his girlfriend. He had drunk more than four bottles of beer the night before the incident, the lawyer said.

But Deputy Public Prosecutor Ramesh Ethan Ananda called the rape "nothing short of a gross violation of her right to personal integrity, dignity and womanhood".

He said the victim's embarrassment was further exacerbated by the fact that a bystander had witnessed the rape. A man waiting for the lift saw Abdul Razeef lying on top of the victim and rocking his body when he glanced towards the staircase landing.

The DPP added that the offences were committed in a public place and such offences "greatly undermine public confidence in the safety of HDB estates".

In sentencing, Justice Chan Seng Onn called Abdul Razeef's assault brutal - that he subjugated her and put her in fear of her safety so he could rape her, penetrate her mouth with his private parts, and repenetrate her without her consent - "a process which no doubt upset her and violated her dignity and womanhood".


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