McNair Road, Singapore. Photo: Google Maps

A 27-year-old man from India was jailed for three years and given four strokes of the cane by a Singapore court on Monday after he pleaded guilty to causing wrongful restraint, having molested and repeatedly kissed a 26-year-old domestic helper in an apartment-block elevator in February.

Verma Gaurav arrived in Singapore in mid-2016 on a student visa and was majoring in hospitality management at the STEi Institute, The Straits Times reported.

On the evening of February 24, Gaurav met the victim, a domestic worker from Myanmar, as she was collecting mail on the ground floor of an apartment block on McNair Road, the court heard.

He greeted the woman, who did not reply but entered the elevator instead. Gaurav managed to squeeze himself into it before the door closed. He tried to kiss her, but she resisted.

He stepped up his effort by putting his left arm around the woman’s neck and posed for a mobile-phone photo by pressing his face hard against hers. He kissed her on the lips while also drawing her body close to himself by grabbing her neck.

The elevator door opened twice, and both times he prevented the woman from escaping. He kissed her five times before the victim finally managed to get away the third time the door opened.

On the following day, while heading to a supermarket on Towner Road, the victim was startled by Gaurav, who emerged from behind, saying that he wanted to kiss her.

She walked away but was grabbed by the neck and kissed on the lips. She warned him that she would report him to the police.

Gaurav was arrested on March 2, a day after his victim filed a police report.

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