Indian-origin Singaporean jailed for raping runaway girl

Indian-origin Singaporean jailed for raping runaway girl

Justice Mavis Chionh noted the “enormous personal harm” suffered by the victim, who blames herself for how she got drunk and was raped.

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Singapore: An Indian-origin Singaporean bar owner was sentenced to 13 years and four weeks in prison on Monday and will receive nine strokes of the cane for raping a 17-year-old girl who ran away after allowing her to work for him. Raj Kumar Bala, 42, was found guilty of each count of raping and molesting the victim and a third count of harboring a runaway under the Children and Young Persons Act, Channel News Asia reported.

Defense lawyer Ramesh Tiwari said his client has asked for bail pending appeal, according to a channel report. The court heard that the victim was 17 in February 2020 when she ran away from a Singapore girls' home.

She learned of a job opportunity at Bala's Don Bar and Bistro in Dunlop Street, a Little India area of ​​hotels, motels and eateries, from another fugitive who worked there. Another fugitive was also sexually assaulted by the baby, which charges were temporarily dropped. The victim went to a bar for a job interview and met Bala, who described the job duties to her, including serving customers and making drinks. He offers her a role, saying she can stay in a bar with other runaways.

The victim worked at the bar for a few days, but the police got information about people who absconded and worked there. They raided the place in the early hours of February 22, 2020. The victim fled with another girl to escape the raid before being picked up by Bala.

He took them to his condominium, saying they could stay there before drinking with the girls. He raped the victim in a drunken state and had sexual acts with another girl.

The victim left the condo and turned herself in at home in July 2020, but in August 2020 she told her case worker that she had been raped. Justice Mavis Chionh noted the “enormous personal harm” suffered by the victim, who blames herself for how she became intoxicated by the rape.

Her testimony in court, which was corroborated by her ex-boyfriend, explained how trauma from her past would be relived in ways that negatively affected her health, the judge noted. She said Bala knew the victim was on the run from the young woman and the police and depended on him for income and shelter.

Bala faces other pending charges and has reportedly not yet decided what to do with them. According to a report by “The Straits Times”, the bar owner faces 22 more charges relating to five other victims, mostly for sexual offences. The charges are pending in court.

He is accused of raping and molesting a victim identified in court documents as B1, raping and sexually assaulting a victim identified as B5 and raping, molesting and threatening another victim identified as B6. He is accused of sexually penetrating a minor under 16, identified as B7, and molesting and alarming a second victim, identified as B8.


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