Monday, 26 Oct 2020

Serial molester sentenced to 33 months' jail for targeting 2 teenage girls

SINGAPORE – A serial molester was jailed for two years and nine months on Friday (Sept 18) after targeting four victims – two of them soon after he was released from prison in January last year and the other two while he was out on bail.  

Vaz Clive Hilary Cheng Kiat outraged the modesty of a 31-year-old woman in February last year, and targeted a 24-year-old woman the following month .

Police arrested him but while out on bail, he molested two 13-year-old girls in separate incidents.

The 41-year-old Singaporean pleaded guilty earlier this month to two molestation charges involving the teenagers. Two other charges for similar offences linked to the women were considered during sentencing.

Cheng, who has been in and out of jail for molestation since 2003, targeted the first teenager on board bus service 190 on May 25 last year. The girl sat beside her sister, while their parents took the seats in front of them.

Despite this, Cheng brazenly molested the 13-year-old girl through a gap between the seat and a window. The teenager kept silent as she was afraid and did not know how to react.

She told her mother about her ordeal only after they alighted later that evening.

Cheng molested the second 13-year-old girl on Aug 3 this year on the upper deck of bus service 43. The girl yelled at Cheng, who apologised and got up.

She told the bus driver about what had happened and the bus pulled up at a bus stop near Asiawide Industrial Building in Pereira Road, off Upper Paya Lebar Road.

When the driver opened the doors to allow a passenger to get off, Cheng alighted and tried to flee.

The passenger ran after Cheng and grabbed his bag, causing him to fall and fracture his knee cap. The driver alerted the police and Cheng was taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital for treatment.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Chong Kee En had earlier noted that Cheng has a fetish for touching women from the back and he has also been diagnosed with depression.

The DPP added: “The accused knows he has a diagnosis of depression and it causes him to offend in this specific modality – by committing (molestation) on female passengers. However, his willingness to carry on with treatment outside of prisons is poor.”

The court heard that Cheng had defaulted on his treatment and medication.

“Prisons therefore create the sort of structured environment that would ensure compliance,” said DPP Chong.

For each count of molesting a girl below 14 years old, an offender can be jailed for up to five years and fined or caned.

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