KOTA KINABALU: A Pakistani man was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment by the Sessions Court here yesterday after being charged with molesting his 14-year-old female worker.
Judge Azreena Aziz imposed the sentence on Ahmad Imtiaz, 24, after finding him guilty as charged last Friday.
The accused was convicted under Section 14 of the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017, which is punishable with imprisonment for a term of up to 20 years and with whipping, upon conviction.
He was found guilty of hugging, touching the minor’s breast and rubbing his private parts against the girl’s backside at a shop in Bandar Baru Penampang, at 6 pm on February 20. The court also ordered the accused to be put under police supervision for two years, but allowed a stay of execution, pending his appeal to the High Court here.
The accused’s previous bail was increased by another RM10,000 from his current bail of RM20,000 with two local sureties, pending disposal of his appeal. Apart from that, the court also ordered the accused to report twice a month at a nearest police station and for his passport to be further impounded by the court.
The prosecution had established a prima facie case against the accused on September 30 after calling seven witnesses while the defence had three witnesses, including the accused.
In pleading for a lenient sentence, counsel Dato’ Seri Rakhbir Singh submitted that his client is a first offender and married with a wife and two kids while only working at a sundry shop and had attended all the court hearings.
In reply, the prosecution pressed for a deterrent sentence as the accused had taken advantage on his worker when he should have protected the girl and the law is set up for sexual offences of this nature, especially to protect the underaged.