(Source: www.straitstimes.com)

The husband of a woman who was allegedly raped in broad daylight in MacRitchie Reservoir two years ago said yesterday he persuaded her to make a police report, even though she was reluctant to do so at first.

“I told her she needed to stand up for herself and prevent other people from suffering the same fate,” said the man. He was testifying on the second day of the trial of her alleged rapist.

Pramanik Liton, 24, a Bangladeshi construction worker, allegedly abducted the 39-year-old Chinese national along a trail at the park at knife-point. He then raped her and forced her to perform oral sex on him between 1.45pm and 3.35pm on Feb 8, 2015.

Liton allegedly returned to MacRitchie Reservoir the next evening. Between 9.30pm and 9.55pm on Feb 9, 2015, he allegedly stole a woman’s sling bag and bit the finger of her boyfriend.

Two charges related to this incident – one for theft and one for causing hurt – have been stood down for now.

Liton is currently on trial for two counts of aggravated rape, one count of sexual assault by penetration and one count of abduction for illicit intercourse.

Yesterday, the Singaporean husband of the alleged rape victim told the High Court that she was “unlike her usual cheerful self” when she called him on the phone on the afternoon of Feb 8 and said that she needed help.

The couple were not married at the time. When he met her at a cafe at MacRitchie Reservoir, she was in a state of shock and her voice was shaky as she told him she was “nearly killed” and had been “violated”.

The man, who cannot be named to protect the identity of his wife, said she was constantly scanning her surroundings in fear and looking out for the perpetrator.

He said she was initially reluctant to go to the police because she was afraid her identity would be exposed in the media and because she was unfamiliar with how the police in Singapore handle such cases.

Two workers at the park also took the stand to say that she looked “exhausted” and “scared” when they came across her that afternoon.

Security guard Mohamed Nizamudin Ahamed said she told him “this place is not safe” and made a strangling gesture to show what her assailant had done to her.

Two Gurkha trackers also testified how they respectively located the crime scene and found a jackknife in the forest. A thumbprint that was found on the knife led to Liton’s arrest on Feb 10.

A day after his arrest, Liton admitted in a police statement that he had used a small knife to frighten the woman into having sex with him. He also asked for forgiveness. But yesterday, he said the signature on the statement was not his. The trial continues.

More Info: www.straitstimes.com

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