S'pore woman jailed 10 months 2 weeks for abusing helper who had to climb down 15 storeys to escape

The victim was abused over a span of six months.

Guan Zhen Tan | November 18, 2020, 06:12 PM

Nuur Audadi Yusoff, who abused her Indonesian helper Sulis Setoywati until she resorted to escaping from her employer's place of residence on the 15th storey, has been sentenced to jail.

Abused several times in the span of six months

It was previously reported in September 2020 that Nuur Audadi had pleaded to six charges of voluntarily causing hurt to Sulis.

According to court documents seen by Mothership.sg, Sulis arrived in Singapore in the middle of 2017 and began working for Nuur Audadi and her family for six months, from December 2017 to May 2018.

Within those six months, Sulis experienced various incidents of abuse in the hands of Nuur Audadi, who spat, slapped, and dragged Sulis by the hair.

These would be for reasons such as Sulis forgetting to apply baby ointment on Nuur Audadi's child, Sulis singing to Nuur Audadi's children, or when the children had not been bathed.

A total of seven items were used on Sulis in the course of the various incidences of abuse.

For example, Nuur Audadi had swung a glass cup at Sulis and hit her over the head with an umbrella handle.

In April 2018, Nuur Audadi discovered Sulis had a mobile phone.

She went through her personal chats and photos and found out that Sulis uploaded photos of her children on Facebook.

Nuur Audadi then slapped Sulis on her face and hand with the phone several times, causing Sulis' face to bleed.

Nuur Audadi also then accused Sulis of flirting with her husband, hitting Sulis head and back multiple times with a broom.

This led to Sulis' escape via the residence's balcony, climbing down 15 levels "balcony by balcony" till she reached the ground floor.

She then lodged a police report in the afternoon.

Employer jailed

For repeatedly abusing Salis over several months, Nuur Audadi was sentenced to 10 months and two weeks jail.

In submissions to the court, Deputy Public Prosecutor Chong Kee En called this a case of "vicious abuse", noting that Nuur Audadi "was triggered by the flimsiest of excuses to fly into a rage".

"This is plainly a case where every single injury inflicted entailed a combination of physical and psychological harm", Chong said, mentioning that Salis remains fearful of Nuur Audadi till today.

According to CNA, Chong noted that Nuur Audadi had apologised and compensated Sulis S$7,020 for her injuries and lost income.

Chong noted that the apology and compensation came very late.

As such he urged the court to not consider it as a huge mitigating factor.

Nuur Audadi’s lawyer Kalaithasan Karuppaya of Regent Law pleaded for leniency and compassion, adding that Nuur Audadi wished to delay serving her sentence until after Jan. 7, as her son is due to undergo surgery.

Nuur Audadi, however, was reported as saying that she is willing to begin serving her sentence immediately.

Echoing Chong's statements, District Judge Ronald Gwee said that it is "clear" that a sentence must be given to Nuur Audadi, "to send a strong message that such cruel behaviour is simply unacceptable".

For voluntarily causing hurt, Noor Audadi can be imprisoned for a jail term of up to three years, or a fine of up to S$5,000, or be subjected to both.

In addition, given that the offences were against a domestic worker, the penalties can be increased up to one-and-a-half times.

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Top image via Matthias Ang