Man who molested 6 young girls at Hougang Swimming Complex on same night jailed

·Senior Reporter
Indian national Job Mathew Panakkal, 37, was sentenced to 20 weeks' jail on Wednesday (July 3) after he pleaded guilty to molesting three girls between 10 and 13 years old. (PHOTO: Getty Creative)
Indian national Job Mathew Panakkal, 37, was sentenced to 20 weeks' jail on Wednesday (July 3) after he pleaded guilty to molesting three girls between 10 and 13 years old. (PHOTO: Getty Creative)

SINGAPORE — He swam after six girls at the Hougang Swimming Complex and touched their buttocks and thighs as he sped past his victims.

Indian national Job Mathew Panakkal, 37, was sentenced to 20 weeks' jail on Wednesday (July 3) after he pleaded guilty to molesting three girls between 10 and 13 years old.

Another four charges involving three other victims were taken into consideration for his sentencing. None of the victims can be named to protect their identities.

Accused chased down victims in pool

Job, an infrastructure engineer, began swimming laps in the adult pool at around 7pm on 12 September. He later spotted a group of children entering the pool and swam in their direction.

While swimming past one 13-year-old girl at a fast speed, Job stretched out his hand and touched her thigh. The girl felt the contact and swam faster, but Job followed her until she joined a group of swimmers.

About seven minutes later, Job molested another 10-year-old girl in the same manner.

The girl, feeling disgusted and outraged, informed her swimming instructor about the incident, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Victoria Ting.

Job molested another 12-year-old girl minutes later by touching her buttocks while swimming past her. The girl also complained to her swimming coach.

A social worker caring for some children swimming in the pool lodged a police report about Job the next day. She said that as the girls tried to swim away from Job, he would swim faster and touch them as he went past.

For each count of molesting a person under the age of 14, Job could have been jailed up to five years as well as fined and/or caned.

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