Ex-NUS lecturer escapes jail for molestation charge, granted acquittal

He was previously accused of molesting a woman during the early hours of Jul. 4, 2020.

Winnie Li | January 29, 2024, 07:36 PM



A former National University of Singapore (NUS) lecturer and Tembusu College fellow who was handed a molestation charge in March 2023 was granted a discharge amounting to an acquittal by the court on Jan. 29, 2024.

44-year-old Jeremy Fernando was previously accused of molesting a woman during the early hours of Jul. 4, 2020.

Fernando's acquittal comes after his charge was compounded upon reaching an agreement with the alleged victim to compensate her, The Straits Times reported.

However, the court proceedings did not reveal further details.

What does this mean?

With his charge compounded, Fernando was able to avoid a potential jail term, as those convicted of molestation could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, caned, or received any combination of the punishments above.

He will also not be considered convicted and will not carry a criminal record for the molestation charge.

According to the Criminal Procedure Code, the composition amount may not exceed S$5,000.

What is compounding a charge?

In Singapore, those accused of offences such as voluntarily causing hurt, mischief, and outrage of modesty could, with approval from the prosecution, choose to compound their charges by paying a composition to the victim.

A full list of compoundable offences is listed in the Criminal Procedure Code.

Before agreeing to have the accused's charge compounded, the public prosecutor will need to take into consideration various factors, including the circumstances of the offence and whether the accused was convicted of a similar offence previously.

Related stories

Top images via NUS & Google Maps