Co-founder of Singapore’s Beef Bro on trial for sexually assaulting sister’s drunk friend

30-Sep-2020 Intellasia | Malay Mail | 6:02 AM Print This Post

The 24-year-old co-founder of local food business Beef Bro went on trial today for molesting and sexually assaulting his younger sister’s former primary school classmate.

Norvan Tan En Jie is contesting four charges in the High Court. He is accused of targeting the girl, now aged 23, in the wee hours of Boxing Day in 2016.

The alleged victim had been out drinking with Tan’s sister and other friends before going to the Tans’ flat to sleep.

Today, prosecutors said a psychiatrist will testify that the alleged victim could not give consent at the time due to acute alcohol intoxication.

She cannot be named due to a court gag order to protect her identity.

Tan’s lawyer, Amarjit Singh Sidhu, argued for the gag order to extend to Tan’s identity but Justice Ang Cheng Hock rejected this.

Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Ng Yiwen also objected to Singh’s application, saying that Tan and the alleged victim only knew each other through his sister, who was her primary schoolmate from “many many years ago”.

The judge then agreed with the prosecution that merely redacting the purported victim’s identity would serve to protect her.

According to a 2016 Vulcan Post article, Tan studied at Republic Polytechnic and has had a hand in running five businesses.

Beef Bro specialises in halal flame-grilled beef cubes with three outlets across the island.

Before the alleged incident

The court heard that Tan’s sister, the alleged victim and other friends went to Tantric Bar in Tanjong Pagar on the evening of December 25, 2016. They were all 19 years old then.

The alleged victim drank a few glasses of beer there before they went to Starz club along Orchard Road where she drank more alcohol.

She was unsure what she was drinking and drank whatever was offered to her by the group.

Around 5am, Tan’s sister and the alleged victim headed to the Tans’ flat.

In the car, she told her friend that she wanted to vomit but managed to control herself.

When the two girls arrived at the flat at about 5.45am, Tan and two of his friends were in his bedroom after a night of drinking.

When Tan’s sister asked him to leave his room as she wanted to speak to one of his friends, he went to the kitchen. He heard the alleged victim vomiting in the toilet there.

Their parents were asleep at the time.

Prosecution’s case

Prosecutors said in their opening statement that Tan spoke to her there but she was too drunk to respond.

He then carried her out of the toilet, placed her on the living room sofa and kissed her on the lips before she eventually went back to the toilet as she felt like retching again.

She is set to testify that he carried her again, this time into his sister’s bedroom, where he molested and sexually assaulted her. He then left and she ran back to the toilet to vomit once more.

DPP Ng told the court: “While the victim was vomiting into the toilet bowl, she felt someone pulling down her shorts and underwear at the same time.

“She recognised that it was the accused from his voice, and she put up a struggle when she realised the accused was attempting to (rape her). She failed to push the accused away in her intoxicated state, and he eventually (sodomised her).”

Tan then left her in the toilet and his sister later took her back to her bedroom to sleep, the prosecutor added.

Following the incident, the alleged victim shared her “confusion and distress” with some friends as well as her suspicions that Tan had sexually assaulted her.

She also exchanged text messages with Tan’s sister about her suspicions and the other girl revealed that her brother had admitted to having “fingered” the alleged victim, DPP Ng said.

The alleged victim made a police report the next day and Tan was arrested.

A Changi general Hospital doctor will testify that Tan went for an erectile function assessment on May 23, 2017, where the doctor found no evidence of erectile dysfunction.

A Health Sciences Authority analyst will also give evidence that Tan’s semen was found on the back of the alleged victim’s T-shirt and her DNA was found on his underwear.

The trial continues this afternoon.

If convicted of sexual assault by penetration, Tan could be jailed up to 20 years, and fined or caned.

Those convicted of molestation can be jailed up to two years, fined, caned, or receive any combination of the three punishments.


Category: Singapore

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