HKSAR v. CHAN HO LEUNG, BILLY

DCCC985/2011

IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE

HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

CRIMINAL CASE NO. 985 OF 2011

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HKSAR
v.
Chan Ho-leung, Billy
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Before: H H Judge Geiser

Date: 4 November 2011 at 10.33 am

Present: Mr Winston Chan, SPP of the Department of Justice, for HKSAR
Ms M Moosdeen, instructed by Eric Chan & Co., assigned by the Director of Legal Aid, for the Defendant

Offence: (1) – (5) Indecent assault on another person
(猥褻侵犯另一人)

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Reasons for Sentence

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1. Defendant, you have pleaded guilty to five charges of indecent assault on another person, contrary to section 122(1) of the Crimes Ordinance, Cap.200, Laws of Hong Kong.

2. The offences occurred all within a short timeframe of each other, some 6 weeks or thereabouts, between 4 December of last year,that is Charge 1, and an unknown date in January 2011, that is Charge 5.

3. All of the offences took place in the Central Mid-levels area of Hong Kong, predominantly Caine Road and Bonham Road, and they alloccurred either late at night or in the early hours of the morning, your victims being young to middle-aged ladies.

4. Your modus operandi in relation to each of the offences was very similar. You stalked your victims by following them and then attackedthem by typically grabbing their breasts underneath their clothes. Violence was used. For example, with regard to Charge 1, youfollowed your victim and when you intercepted her you pushed her shoulders, shoved her into a wall, and used you hands to grope herbreasts.

5. Charge 2 is a particularly serious indecent assault, which I have already commented on as being very close to rape. You followedyour victim into the lift lobby of her home. When the lift stopped, you got out first and the victim followed, walking slowly behindyou. You suddenly turned around, hit her and pushed her onto the ground. You grabbed her breasts from underneath her clothes, pulleddown her underpants and inserted your fingers into her vagina for approximately 1 minute. Your victim bravely managed to push youoff by biting your cheek and punching and kicking you.

6. Charge 3, you stalked your victim while she was walking home along Caine Road. You were on the opposite side of the road. Whenshe entered her building, you crossed the road and followed her into the building. While she was walking upstairs between the 1stand 2nd floor, you suddenly rushed toward her. She was pushed to the ground and you grabbed her breasts three to four times underneathher clothes. The victim screamed and you fled.

7. Charges 4 and 5 involve the same victim. Insofar as Charge 4 is concerned, not only did you follow your victim into her building,you actually had the gall and temerity to follow her into her boyfriend’s flat. She asked you what you were doing there, whereuponyou grabbed her breasts, tried to kiss her, and actually tried to rip off her clothes. The victim was able, once again, bravely,I may say, to push you out of the door.

8. This young lady around two weeks later was walking to her boyfriend’s home along Bonham Road. You saw her. She asked you whyyou were following her. You did not reply but you kissed her and grabbed her legs. She slapped your face and you ran away. Thisgives rise to Charge 5.

9. It was not until 7 June of this year that you were arrested after DNA matching.

10. To say the least, these are appalling offences. You displayed no concern whatsoever for these ladies or their dignity.

11. Two of the victims that you preyed upon have been traumatised by these events. One of them, the victim of the 2nd charge, suffersfrom anxiety. She cannot sleep and she has intrusive images of the assault on her. She has been assessed by a psychiatrist anddiagnosed as having acute stress reaction as a result of this appalling assault. She avoided going out at night for some considerabletime after the incident. I do not find this surprising at all. She now feels her neighbourhood to be a dangerous place.

12. Another one of your victims has informed me through a statement that she made to the police as recently as 3 October of this year,that since the offence in January of this year, she has panic attacks about going out at night. She still feels scared whenevershe is on the way home, worrying that somebody will be following her. She can still hardly sleep at night.

13. This is what you have done to your victims, defendant.

14. You are 25 years of age and have one previous conviction for indecent assault in April of last year when you were placed on probationfor 18 months. Another aggravating feature of these offences is of course that they were all committed whilst you were on probationfor a similar offence.

15. I do have before me a probation officer’s report, together with a psychiatric and psychologist’s report.

16. Dealing with the psychiatric and psychologist’s report first, both doctors tell me that there is nothing mentally wrong with you. The psychiatrist, however, tells me that you are a sexual predator and are particularly dangerous as the risk of re-offending isvery high. The psychologist agrees, saying that you are a sexual predator looking for opportunities to assault women. He also considersthe risk of re-offending to be high.

17. The probation officer in his report refers to your antagonised relationship with your parents and siblings. You are a lost soul,and your mother points out that your worst weakness is your total lack of insight into your own problems and refusal to talk to anyonewho is prepared to help you.

18. I do note, however, that there are some family members of yours in court today and I have had read to me and read myself the numberof letters of support that have been placed before me from your family members.

19. I repeat, these offences for which you appear before me today to be sentenced are very serious. You stalked your victims, assaultedthem, violated their dignity, and traumatised them. Offences such as these will not be tolerated by this court, which has a dutyto protect women from people such as yourself.

20. I turn now to my sentences. In sentencing you, I take account of all that has been said on your behalf by Miss Moosdeen this morningby a way of mitigation. I particularly take into account your plea of guilty, which has spared the victims the embarrassment ofcoming to court to give evidence about these distressing assaults.

21. On Charge 1, I adopt a starting point of 3 years’ imprisonment. I will discount that by one-third to reflect your plea of guilty,coming to 2 years’ imprisonment on Charge 1.

22. On Charge 2, my starting point is one of 4½ years’ imprisonment. This will be reduced to 3 years to take account of your pleaof guilty. I order this sentence to run consecutively to the sentence on Charge 1.

23. On Charge 3, the starting point is one of 3 years’ imprisonment. It will be reduced to 2 years to reflect your plea. I orderthis sentence to run concurrently to the sentence on Charge 1.

24. On Charge 4, my starting point is one of 3½ years’ imprisonment. After the deduction of the one-third discount, this I reduceto 2 years and 4 months’ imprisonment, 6 months of which I order to run consecutively to the sentence on Charge 1, the balanceconcurrently.

25. On Charge 5, the starting point is one of 3 years’ imprisonment, which I reduce to 2 years to take account of your plea. Thissentence I order to run concurrently with the sentence on Charge 1, coming to an overall sentence of 5½ years’ imprisonment inall.

H H Judge Geiser
District Judge

Please refer to CACC309/2011 for the relevant appeal(s) to the Court of Appeal.