PUTRAJAYA: The Court of Appeal today reinstated a 12-year jail term and two strokes of the cane to a former lorry driver for raping his neighbour’s underage daughter, resulting in the girl becoming pregnant and trying to commit suicide.

A three-judge panel of the Court of Appeal, led by Datuk Suraya Othman, allowed the 60-year-old man’s appeal against the Shah Alam High Court’s decision on Feb 28, 2020, which sentenced him to 25 years in prison and 10 strokes of the cane.

Judge Suraya, who sat with Justices Datuk Wira Ahmad Nasfy Yasin and Datuk Seri Mariana Yahya, reinstated the 12-year imprisonment and two strokes of the cane, meted out by the Sepang Sessions Court against the man.

Suraya said that the High Court judge had misdirected in using the provisions under the Penal Code when increasing the sentence of 12 years imprisonment and two strokes of the cane to 25 years imprisonment and 10 strokes of the cane after allowing the prosecution’s appeal.

Judge Suraya, in her judgment, said that the maximum punishment for the offence of raping a minor under Section 375 (g) of the Penal Code, was 20 years imprisonment, but the High Court judge had sentenced the man to 25 years imprisonment.

“Therefore, the court set aside the sentence of the High Court and reinstated the sentence meted out by the Sessions Court, starting from the date of arrest on June 11, 2017,” she said.

The father of six pleaded guilty to the charge of raping a girl, then 13 years and seven months old, at a house in Puchong, Sepang, at 11pm, between mid-March and April 2017, under Section 375 (g) of the Penal Code and punishable under Section 376 (1) of the same law.

Based on the facts of the case, in mid -March 2017, the appellant had taken the victim to the appellant’s house, on the pretext of celebrating his son’s birthday, and upon arriving at the appellant’s house, there were no one in the house.

The man then raped the victim and then threatened to post pictures of the victim’s private parts on Facebook if she was to tell her mother about the incident.

The teen was later confirmed pregnant and informed her mother and a police report was lodged. The victim was then referred to a psychiatrist who suggested that the victim’s foetus be aborted after the victim showed symptoms of depression and attempted suicide.

The results of a deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) test on the foetus found that the appellant was its biological father. — Bernama