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Jail for ex-teacher who sexually abused eight boys, went on run for 17 years

Jail for ex-teacher who sexually abused eight boys, went on run for 17 years

Source: Straits Times
Article Date: 28 Sep 2020
Author: Shaffiq Alkhatib

A primary school teacher sexually abused eight male pupils in 2001 and 2002 before absconding to Indonesia. The Singaporean man then remained on the run for 17 years.

A primary school teacher sexually abused eight male pupils in 2001 and 2002 before absconding to Indonesia. The Singaporean man then remained on the run for 17 years.

During that time, he assumed a new identity and obtained an Indonesian passport under another name. Using his new travel documents, he returned to Singapore 31 times between Jan 8 and Dec 28 in 2015 to visit his family.

He was finally caught on Aug 21 last year, when he went to Woodlands East Neighbourhood Police Centre to report the loss of his NRIC.

A district court heard that he had wanted to obtain a replacement card in order to withdraw cash from his Central Provident Fund. The former teacher was arrested after a police officer screened him and found that he was a wanted man.

The man, who is now 56 years old, was sentenced last Friday to 10� years' jail after pleading guilty to three counts of molestation and one count of carnal intercourse against the order of nature. These offences involved four pupils.

He also admitted to an offence under the Immigration Act.

Nineteen other charges, including sexual offences linked to four other boys, were considered during sentencing. The man's details and those of the school cannot be disclosed due to a gag order.

The former teacher targeted his first victim in 2001, after they went swimming together at a swimming complex. The child was about 10 years old at the time.

The boy was taking a shower in a changing room when the man, who was naked, entered the same cubicle and asked the pupil to touch his private parts. The child complied.

The following year, the man targeted three other boys who were about 12 years old at the time.

He made his second victim perform a similar act on him after another swimming session in 2002.

A third boy was made to touch the man's private parts during a school camp in mid-2002.

The man targeted his fourth victim in late 2002 as he suspected the child to be gay.

In September that year, he sent that boy a text message, claiming that he needed help to perform some work in his flat.

When the boy reached the unit, the man lured him to his bedroom where he asked the child to perform oral sex on him. The boy complied, the court heard.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Chua Ying-Hong said the fourth victim felt afraid and confused. He later told the principal of his school about his ordeal.

The other victims were talking about the man in their school canteen on Nov 12, 2002 and told one another what he had done to them.

They then decided to tell a teacher about the acts. The school principal called the man to his office two days later to tell him about the allegations and that he would alert the police.

The principal also told the man to return to the school the next day with his passport. On Nov 15, 2002, the offender packed his belongings, drove his car to Johor Baru and took a flight to Kuala Lumpur.

After that, he took another flight to Surabaya in Indonesia before eventually settling in Cirebon in north-west Java, where he assumed a fake identity. He then used his assumed name to obtain an identity card before getting a passport.

He later used the passport to travel to Singapore multiple times before police here arrested him last year.

In a statement on Friday, the Ministry of Education said the man is no longer its employee as of April 2003.

Source: Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Permission required for reproduction.

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