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Former teacher pleads guilty to underage sex with student
SINGAPORE: A former secondary school teacher pleaded guilty to having sex with his underaged student, claiming it made him feel "more of a man".
Currently unemployed, the 41-year-old was found guilty of five counts of underage sex with the girl, who was 14 years old at that time.
They had sex on more than 15 occasions within a two-year period from end 2007, at various places including a Co-Curricular Activity (CCA) room of the school.
The teacher, who headed the school's design and technology department, was also in charge of the "Robotics Club" which the girl joined in 2006.
He asked the girl to be his girlfriend because he found her attractive.
The man, who was then married with a child, also bought her gifts when they were on school trips together to South Korea.
They started becoming intimate in the Robotics CCA room in the school by hugging and kissing each other.
He had sex with the girl the first time on a sofa bed inside the room.
This continued on several occasions in 2008 and the court heard that the teacher did not use a condom for most of the encounters.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Kavita Uthrapathy, who pressed for a jail term of between seven and 10 years, said "it was entirely fortuitous that the girl did not get pregnant".
The girl's age also came under scrutiny, with Ms Uthrapathy saying he had "preyed on her youth and vulnerability".
She added that the abuse of trust was a serious aggravating factor, and the teacher had also "violated the sanctity of the school" by committing the offences "very brazenly during the day."
The incident was only brought to light when his wife, who just gave birth to their second child, discovered text messages between the two in January 2010.
A few months later, she informed the girl's mother of the illicit relationship and a police report was made.
The court also heard that the teacher had harassed the girl over the phone, threatening to reveal the affair to her friends.
Ms Uthrapathy added that this caused the girl distress and recurrent nightmares, and she felt "trapped and traumatised".
The court also heard that the man did not express any form of guilt or remorse after committing the offence.
He was also observed to have acted normally by his wife and principals of his former schools.
But the court heard Friday that the man, who has no previous brushes with the law and received numerous awards during his time as a teacher, was remorseful.
He will be sentenced on January 17 next year.
If convicted, he could be jailed up to 10 years, fined or both.