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Man, 54, met boy, 12, on Grindr, gave him money after sexual encounters

A boy holding his phone on his bed. (PHOTO: Getty Images)
A boy holding his phone on his bed. (PHOTO: Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — A hawker stall assistant who met a 12-year-old boy through a gay dating app told the boy he would teach him about sexual intercourse.

Ng Tuan Loo, 54, then engaged in sexual acts with the boy, now 14, over the three occasions they met in January 2020. He would give the boy money after each encounter, and also pay for his travel fare.

Ng was jailed for two years and eight months on Monday (21 February) after he plead guilty to three out of nine counts of sexually penetrating a minor under 16, with the remaining six counts considered for his sentencing.

The boy, who identified as bisexual, cannot be named to protect his identity.

After the boy was introduced to gay dating apps around June 2019, he downloaded two such apps, Grindr and Blued, with the intention of expanding his circle of male friends. To register for an account, he falsely declared his age as 18, but indicated he was 13 on his Grindr profile.

Around end 2019 and early 2020, Ng befriended the victim on Grindr despite knowing his age. They exchanged contact details and began communicating, with Ng asked the victim if he ever had “fun sex with others”.

“The accused told the victim that he would take care of the victim and give him money…he also told the victim that he would show the victim how to engage in sexual intercourse,” read the prosecution in court.

Between 16 and 28 January 2020, the two met at Ng’s behest. On 16 January, Ng offered to pay for the boy’s GrabCar trip to the older man’s house, where they engaged in sex acts. He then gave the boy $70. Four days later, he asked the boy to come to his house after school. They again engaged in sex acts and Ng gave the boy $80 before he left.

On 28 January, the boy asked Ng to buy him a packet of cigarettes. Ng complied and asked the boy to collect the cigarettes from his house that afternoon. They then engaged in the same acts before the man gave the boy cash of between $20 and $30 and a red packet with $20 inside.

On 5 February 2020, the victim’s stepfather checked the boy’s mobile phone and discovered the chats. He confronted his stepson, who said he might be gay and confessed to having physical contact with three men.

The stepfather contacted Ng to scold him over the sexual encounters, but Ng claimed that the boy had been asking him for money and asked how to “settle” the issue.

After ending the call, the stepfather discussed the issue with the boy’s mother before lodging a police report on 20 February 2020. He stated in the report that the boy had been sexually assaulted by three men. Ng was identified and arrested on the same day.

The two other men who were charged for sexual offences against the victim are Medrano Ermin Marasigan and Muhammad Azman Samsudin. Both pleaded guilty previously and were jailed for two years, eight months' and two years, eight months, and four weeks respectively.

Teo Choo Kee, Ng’s lawyer, said that that his client did not mean to “entice” the victim. He was just “being nice” as he was an older man with an income while the other party was a young boy, said Teo.

For sexual penetration of a minor who is below under 14, Ng could have been jailed up to 20 years and fined, or caned.

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