If you didn’t know, there has been a huge amount of press coverage over a soup kitchen and church volunteer who is allegedly a sexual predator.
The story first came to light when Kembara Kitchen’s founder, William Cheah made a series of Facebook posts stating that a man called TC, have been actively messaging young girls he had met during volunteering.
The reason he gave for making the post was;
It’s an awkward and nasty situation for all of us, especially since he’s someone we all know personally. However, in situations such as these, comfort and expediency must take a back seat to safety for children. This particular case is even more sensitive in nature as the subject is actively involved in community work that grants him access to vulnerable groups. We must be aware of the dangers around us and that starts by being aware and unafraid to voice out our concerns and suspicions.
Some key points from William’s initial post;
- The issue first came to light when one of the young volunteers, Miss.L (14-year-old) told the members of the volunteer group that she felt uncomfortable being around TC.
- TC had been sending Miss L a series of personal messages since meeting her during volunteering sessions.
- Messages exchange – or rather, sent – by TC could be considered mundane if view separately. However, taking into account that when TC was messaging Miss L, she was only 13 and he was 31; one might think it would be highly inappropriate. Especially, when he tries to repeatedly ask her out and once, even blatantly request for her private phone no.
Sadly, this was not the worst of it. As it soon came to light, it seems that TC’s actions of approaching young female volunteers happen to be part of his MO.
- In another series of screenshots, TC could be seen messaging another young female volunteer. Yet this time he was more aggressive.
- The screenshots of conversations that took place between TC and Miss K, indicated that despite Miss K’s FIRM rejection of TC’s advances, the man still couldn’t seem to comprehend the word NO!
- The messages sent would always be in the middle-of-the-night or early morning (aka the ungodly hours).
- In one series of exchange, Miss K explicitly stated that she was not into him at all and his advances were not wanted nor funny. Unfortunately, despite stating that he was ‘done’ with her, he still continues to message her.
He has even gotten sexual in one of his messages with one of his alleged victims.
Following the uproar of the expose, TC immediately deleted his (multiple) Facebook account, making it impossible for us to contact him.
Luckily, the peeps at The Star managed to wrangle some comments from him.
Here is what he had to say about the whole situation;
I am actually very straightforward and friendly… my actions have been misunderstood
I don’t have any sickness. My intention is to look for companionship
Age is just a number
As of 8th November 2018, the authorities have begun investigating allegations against TC, as a police report was lodged against him.
The report was made at the Batu 9 Cheras police station. The case is currently investigated under Section 12 of the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017.
Now, what is Section 12 of the Sexual Offences Against Children (SOAC) Act 2017??
Simply putting it, Section 12 deals with child grooming.
Child grooming occurs when an adult befriends a child (anyone who is under the age of 18 per SOAC Act 2017) and create an emotional connection.
However, unlike your typical ‘I-Just-Want-To-Be-Your-Friend’ scenario; the sole intention is to have sex or sexually abuse the child.
Under SOAC Act 2017, Section 12 (1) states the following;
Any person who communicates by any means with a child with the intention to commit or to facilitate the commission of any offence under section … or any offence under the Schedule against the child commits an offence and shall… be punished with imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years and shall also be liable to whipping.
In short: If an adult contacts a child to commit or help commit the following;
- Prepare or make child pornography;
- Include a child in child pornography;
- Distribute child pornography;
- Physically sexually assaulting a child – this includes touching; and/or
- Having non-physical sexual assault on a child – this includes acts such as making a child watch porn, forcing a child to strip while watching AND sending words or sounds that allude to sex;
The adult can be IMPRISONED up to 5 Years and also be WHIPPED!
However, that’s not all.
As there has only been one police report lodged so far and TC has been committing these acts for over 15 years; it’s easy to predict that there will likely be more reports coming in.
Thus far, the only evidence that has been provided to the police as just screenshots of conversations between TC and his victims. And in most of the text, the girls refuse to meet up with him.
But what if one of them did?
Well, is that was the case, TC could be looking at even more severe punishment!
Section 13 of the SOAC Act 2017 spells out the punishment for meeting a child following child grooming.
In Section 13(1)-
Anyone who travels to meet or meets that child they have been sexually grooming is guilty of an offense.
Thus, if there is evidence that TC had met up with one of his victims, he can be IMPRISONED up to 10 Years and be WHIPPED!
In the end, we hope that the truth will prevail and that TC would get the punishment he deserves.
For now, the authorities are asking the victims to not be afraid and to come forward with information. Therefore, anyone who has received unwanted advances by TC is encouraged to contact the police hotline: 03-2052 9999
Before we end, here are some words of advice by child activist, Syed Azmi.