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The Straits Times
December 15, 2021
A teenager approached a group of five that was celebrating a birthday at a barbecue pit to say hello.
But the group turned on him, forcing him to strip. Members of the group also took videos of the incident, one of which was circulated online.
Two male members of the group - a 16-year-old, who had been a student at the time of the offence, and a 20-year-old, who had been unemployed - pleaded guilty in court on Wednesday (Dec 15) to using criminal force with the intention to outrage modesty.
The victim and offenders cannot be named under the Children and Young Persons Act to protect those below 18. Probation suitability reports were called for the two offenders over their involvement in the incident, which happened on March 4 last year.
Another 16-year-old boy who was part of the group, who came up with the idea to pull down the victim's pants after he approached them, is a co-accused in this case.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Huo Jiongrui told the court that the victim - then a 14-year-old student - had passed by the pit near Yishun Ring Road on his e-scooter.
Court documents do not state how the victim knew the group, which had included a 14-year-old girl and an unidentified male.
The victim was restrained from behind and pulled to the ground.
Two of the boys held on to the victim's arms while he was on the floor and restrained his legs.
Another boy undid the victim's belt and pulled down his pants, which he later hung on a sheltered walkway, and his underwear, which he hid in the bushes.
The victim's appeals to stop were ignored and the girl recorded a video using her mobile phone.
Another video was recorded as two of the aggressors removed the victim's shirt.
The victim, who was fully naked by then, escaped and hid near a nearby bush where it was dark.
DPP Huo said: "The accused persons laughed at the victim and later returned the victim his clothes."
The girl then forwarded the videos to the others.
Angered, the victim asked them to delete the videos but he was assured that the videos would not be circulated.
A few days later, a staff member from the victim's school found one of the videos circulating on social media and informed the school's discipline master, who made a police report.
In court, the offenders, who were unrepresented, admitted their mistakes and said they would not commit such an act again.
They will return to court on Jan 28 for sentencing.