Man shocked daughter, 12, posted indecent pictures online
Man tells court how shocked he was to learn that his Sec 1 daughter posted pictures of her private parts on Facebook
First, he found out that his 12-year-old daughter had posted pictures of her private parts online.
That same day, he got a bigger shock when he heard from his estranged wife that their daughter confessed to having sex with a man named Lucifer.
The parents immediately took the girl to a police station and filed a report.
The man, Lee Seow Peng, 39, is now on trial over charges of rape, sexually grooming a minor and attempting to get the girl to perform an indecent act. He pleaded not guilty to the three charges.
Yesterday, on the second day of the trial, the prosecution called the girl's parents to the stand.
We are not naming the girl or her parents to protect her identity.
The girl's father, who was the first to testify yesterday, said that on the afternoon of June 3, 2012, his sister told him that his daughter, then in Secondary 1, posted pictures of her private parts on Facebook.
"I was shocked, upset and guilty. I love my daughter a lot. I was shocked that such a thing could happen."
After the father got home, he took an hour to calm himself down - lest he got too emotional or impulsive - before going online to check it out.
But by then, the pictures had been removed, he said.
So he called the girl's mother, whom he had been separated from since 2005, and told her to check the girl's computer for the pictures.
The girl was then living with her mother, grandparents and uncle.
The father said his wife then sent him a text message, saying they had to make a police report as their daughter had sex with a man named Lucifer, Lee's moniker on the mobile phone app.
He drove out to meet his wife and daughter. "It seemed like a very long drive because the car was so quiet," he said.
At the police station, his wife accompanied their daughter as she made a report. The court heard that the girl has two siblings.
The father also told the court that his daughter lived with her mother and he would meet the girl once a week. And she rarely shared much with him.
"We talk about church life and the Bible. I did try asking her about her daily life and her friends but she wouldn't let me know. She only told me how well she did in school," he said.
The father, who choked up several times yesterday, told the court that the alleged incident affected his family a lot.
"Every time I look at her, something inside hurts me," he said.
"I shouldn't blame her but I feel betrayed and guilty. As a father, I couldn't protect her. I am very sad."
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"I did try asking her about her daily life and her friends but she wouldn't let me know. She only told me how well she did in school."
- The girl's father said that she rarely shared much with him.
I was shocked, upset and guilty. I love my daughter a lot. I was shocked that such a thing could happen.
- The girl's father.
Girl never shared problems with family
Her 12-year-old daughter came home unusually late one day in May 2012 and headed straight for the shower.
When she asked the girl why she was home two hours late, she merely replied that she had been in school.
The girl's mother found out a few days later that her daughter had gone out with Lee Seow Peng, who allegedly raped her that day.
Yesterday, the mother told the court that her estranged husband had called her on June 3, 2012, and said that their daughter had posted pictures of her private parts online.
So she confronted and repeatedly questioned her daughter about the photographs.
It was then that the girl confessed that she had met up with a man whom she got to know via an unnamed mobile messaging app on May 29, 2012.
"She told me the guy took her to Chinese Garden and they had sex there in the car. She confirmed after I asked her three times," she said.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Jasmine Chin-Sabadoasked the girl's mother why she needed to question her daughter three times.
"Because accusing a person is not right and she had to tell the truth. My daughter thought twice and confirmed that it was true," she said.
The girl's parents then took her to a police station.
The mother said: "I was angry, why must such a thing happen to her? She's so young, only 12 years old."
She broke down many times during her testimony and paused each time to compose herself.
The mother also described her daughter as a very quiet girl who did not share her problems with her family back in 2012.
"When I asked her about school or her friends, she would tell me everything was fine and not elaborate how she felt," she said.
She said she had taught her daughter not to go near strangers or let them touch her body.
She also said her daughter has opened up more to her since the alleged incident.
"We are now closer. She knows what she has done. She now shares her happiness and sadness with me and whatever problems she encounters," said the mother.
When Lee, who is representing himself, cross-examined the parents, he thanked each of them for appearing in court and said he was sorry they had to recount these "embarrassing" moments.
He asked the girl's mother if she was aware that he had sent encouraging messages to the girl, telling her to study hard and play the piano well.
The girl's mother retorted: "She didn't learn the piano."
Lee also asked each parent if they were aware that their daughter had sex with her previous boyfriend.
Both parents said "no".
ACCUSED CLAIMS CONFESSION WAS COERCED
A trial within a trial is underway in the case against Lee Seow Peng, accused of raping a 12-year-old girl in 2012.
Lee claimed he was influenced by officers to admit to his offence while giving his statement to the police.
He also claimed that he was unwell and was on medical leave when he was arrested by police officers on June 5, 2012.
As a result, a trial within a trial is being held to determine if his police statement can be admitted as court evidence.
Yesterday, two police officers, Station Inspector Colin Ng and Senior Station Inspector Larry Lim, were called to the stand.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Jasmine Chin-Sabado asked them separately if they had threatened, made promises or any inducement to Lee in the course of investigations.
Both of them said "no".
This part of the trial is expected to continue today, with Lee giving evidence about the recording of his statement.
HE SAYS GIRL INITIATED CONTACT
The 39-year-old is accused of raping the 12-year-old girl three days after meeting her through a mobile phone messaging app.
Lee Seow Peng first met the Secondary 1 student via an unnamed app on May 26, 2012.
They met three days later and he allegedly drove her to a carpark at the Chinese Garden, where he is said to have raped her in the backseat of his car.
On June 3, 2012, Lee allegedly attempted to arrange another meeting with the girl.
The mother discovered his message and, after the girl confessed, made a police report with her father.
PLEADED NOT GUILTY
On Wednesday, Lee pleaded not guilty to one count each of rape, sexually grooming a minor and attempting to get the girl to perform an indecent act.
He said he had met the girl in an adult chat group and that it was the girl who initiated contact with him.
If found guilty of rape, Lee faces between eight and 20 years' jail, and given at least 12 strokes of the cane.
If convicted of sexually grooming a girl under 16, he faces up to three years' jail with a fine.
If found guilty of attempting to procure the commission of an obscene or indecent act by the young girl, he can be jailed up to five years and fined up to $10,000.