In September last year, Seah Chong Hong was caught red-handed stealing women’s underwear – two bras and two pairs of panties – from the common corridor of a HDB block.
The 61-year-old dishwasher later absconded while on police bail and was subsequently found by the authorities with 572 pieces of female undergarments, nightwear and clothes in his possession.
On Monday (29 October), Seah was jailed for one-and-a-half years after pleading guilty to three charges of theft. Another four counts of the same and one count of fraudulent possession of property was considered in sentencing.
Items taken from HDB corridors
The court heard that Seah resided and slept at a staircase landing above a coffeeshop in Redhill where he worked.
On impulse, he would steal the undergarments left hung out to dry along HDB corridors in the area either before or after work.
“He could not explain why he did it except that he felt a certain sense of elation after stealing the undergarments,” said his lawyer Nicholas Ngoh.
Based on a report from the Institute of Mental Health, Seah has borderline intelligence and a fetish for women’s undergarments.
“Seah also suffered a head injury when he was younger and claims that he was exempted from National Service for the same reason,” Ngoh added.
No restitution made
The 572 pieces of clothing were seized for police investigations, Deputy Public Prosecutor Samuel Yap said, and the victims did not want their items back due to hygiene reasons.
Seah has not made any restitution for the stolen items.
For theft, Seah could have been jailed for up to three years and fined per charge.
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