SINGAPORE — A man who stalked his insurance agent after she spurned his romantic advances was fined $4,200 by the State Courts on Thursday (25 February).
Simon Lee Yong Sheng, 31, began sending her gifts to her office, sent her non-policy related texts and called her, even after she pleaded for him to stop his actions.
The real estate agent’s harassment of the woman escalated to the extent that he followed her to her clients’ residence and even threatened to terminate his policy with the woman.
He pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful stalking of the victim, who cannot be named due to a gag order.
Lee got to know the victim, whose age was redacted from court documents, at a Prudential insurance road show in 2017. They exchanged text messages to discuss insurance policy-related issues.
By the end of 2018, Lee became attracted to the woman and told her that he wanted to woo her. The woman rebuffed his advances and told him she was only interested in maintaining a professional relationship.
Undeterred, the man began sending her more messages unrelated to his policy. The woman frequently ignored these messages and made clear that she was uninterested in a romantic relationship with Lee. However, Lee began calling her and sending her gifts at her workplace on special occasions, spurring the woman to plead with him not to send her gifts, for fear of getting into trouble with her superiors.
By July 2019, the victim began feeling alarmed at the harassment. Lee physically followed the woman on three occasions. Once on 16 July 2019, he followed her as she walked towards Novena MRT station. He followed her onto the train and back to Newton MRT station until she reached her workplace.
On 8 November 2019, the woman was meeting two clients at a cafe along Gopeng Street when Lee spotted her. When the man refused to stay away from her, the woman was forced to ask her clients if she could accompany them to their residence for her safety. He continued to wait at the void deck of the HDB block before leaving.
On 11 February last year, Lee followed the woman to her workplace and entered the same lift as her. When she exited to try a different lift, the man again followed her. He repeated the act until the woman sought assistance from a security post and Lee left. One of the victim's colleagues called the police on this occasion, saying, “This guy following us and now don’t want to let us go.”
The woman was unable to block Lee from contacting her as he was her client and she had to be contactable for insurance policy-related issues. Terminating their professional relationship would also have an adverse effect on her work performance, said the prosecution.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Yee Jia Rong sought the maximum fine of $5,000 while Lee's lawyer Irving Choh argued for a fine of $3,000.
Unlawful stalking carries a jail term of up to a year, or a maximum fine of $5,000, or both.
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