A 35-year-old woman was sentenced to 14 years in jail today for neglecting and abusing her young children, one of whom tragically died at the hands of her father. The woman, who cannot be named due to gag orders protecting her surviving children, also attempted to cover up the death by burning the young girl’s body in a pot.
The court heard that the woman ill-treated four of her children, aged between two and 10, by leaving them alone without adequate food, water, or adult supervision. She also inflicted physical abuse, including feeding chili padi as punishment, hitting them with belts and hangers, and slapping them.
Furthermore, she lied to child protection services about the number of children she had, deliberately omitting the deceased 2-year-old girl named Umaisyah. It was partially revealed that Umaisyah had been placed in foster care as a baby before being returned to her parents two years later, where the abuse resumed.
In 2014, the girl’s father, also convicted and sentenced in this case, inflicted a fatal blow, leading to her death. Fearing arrest, the parents then burned Umaisyah’s body and hid it for over five years before its discovery by a family member.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Norine Tan described the case as “entirely motivated out of self-interest” and highlighted the woman’s “irresponsible and willful” neglect of her children. Defense lawyers argued for a lesser sentence due to the woman’s own history of abuse, but District Judge Toh Han Li emphasized that such experiences do not excuse harming one’s own children.
This tragic case serves as a stark reminder of the vulnerability of children and the importance of reporting suspected abuse or neglect. With Umaisyah’s name now partially revealed, she can be remembered as a victim of a horrific crime, not just a nameless statistic.