Parents who abused and poured boiling hot water on their son face new convictions. Their repeated acts of abuse ultimately caused the passing of their 5-year-old son.
In this article, you'll read:
- Parents Who Poured Hot Water Over Their Child Face New Convictions
- Parents Repeatedly Poured Hot Water on Their 5-Year-Old Child
- The Convictions That the Parents Face
Parents Who Poured Hot Water Over Their Child Face New Convictions
On the 12th of June, the Court of Appeal ordered new convictions for the parents who poured hot water on their child. Initially, the court sentenced them to 27 years in jail each.
According to the court document, the couple repeatedly poured hot water on their 5-year-old son until he died from injuries.
The 30-year-old mum of the victim, Azlin Arujunah, now faces either a death sentence or life imprisonment. The order changed after the apex court found her guilty of murder, overturning her original conviction. It was her initial conviction for four counts of causing grievous hurt by dangerous means.
Meanwhile, the 30-year-old father of the child, Ridzuan Mega Abdul Rahman, had his jail term increased to the maximum of life imprisonment. Similarly, it is for causing grievous hurt by dangerous means.
The case was temporarily moved to a later date for further submissions on the final sentence to Azlin Aruhunah. Meanwhile, they adjourned the case to decide whether Ridzuan Mega Abdul Rahman's original caning sentence of 24 strokes should remain.
The court then expanded the interpretation of the law on common intention. Concerning this, the decision by the five-judge apex court came after the prosecution appealed.
Parents Repeatedly Poured Hot Water on Their 5-Year-Old Child
Parents poured hot water on their 5-year-old son on four occasions. The horrible incidents happened between the 15th and the 22nd of 2016 at their one-room flat in Toa Payoh.
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The couple only brought the child to the hospital seven hours after he collapsed following the last incident. The mother, Azlin, poured water on her child in the first three incidents. On the other hand, the father, Ridzuan, did it in the second and fourth incidents.
Azlin ordered her husband to deal with their son in the last incident. Ridzuan poured boiling hot water at their son while the mum was continuously shouting at their 5-year-old child.
The authorities test the family's water dispense. It shows that the water was between 70 degrees Celsius and 90.5 degrees Celsius.
"One of the Worst Cases of Child Abuse"
On the 23rd of October, the poor 5-year-old boy died from horrific scald injuries. According to the prosecutors, it was "one of the worst cases of child abuse." The scald injuries extend over 75% of the kid's body.
In addition, the couple committed other acts of child abuse against their son. It includes locking him into a pet cage and pinching him with a pair of pliers. Aside from that, the parents also hit him with a broom and burned his palm with a heated spoon.
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The boy eventually died from several incidents caused by his parents and other siblings. However, they cannot be identified because they are protected by a gag order.
Originally, the couple faced a charge of murder with the common intention to inflict fatal scald injuries on the boy.
However, a High Court judge found that common intention to inflict a fatal injury had not been sufficiently proved. It was in April 2020 when the judge asked the prosecution to file alternative charges for the acts of scalding.
As part of Azlin's criminal act, this charge invoked the law of common intention to attribute her liability to her husband's act. The couple then faced convictions due to their other acts of abuse.
The Convictions That the Parents Face
The court ordered Ridzuan Mega Abdul Rahman to 27 years in jail and 24 strokes of the cane. Meanwhile, Azlin Arujunah face sentenced to 27 years in prison, with an additional one-year term in place of caning.
The prosecution then files an appeal. They hope to attain murder convictions and life imprisonment for both.
Concerning this, Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon said that the case presented a third novel type of situation where common intention might potentially be applicable.
The first two situations are well-established in case law. They were known as the "dual crime" and "single crime" scenarios.
The Maximum Sentence of Life Imprisonment
The court then said that the aggregation of Azlin's intention to commit the crime amounted to an intention to cause the commutative scald injuries.
On the other hand, the court said that Ridzuan's nature of the crime was "so cruel and inhumane." The crime he committed came within the worst type of such cases that justified the maximum sentence of life imprisonment.