A Malaysian court on Thursday (10 August) charged a man with more than 600 counts of rape against his daughter. He faces a prison term of 12,000 years if found guilty.
It reportedly took two days for the court to read all the charges against the 36-year-old divorcee who sold investment products. Among the 626 sexual assault charges, 599 were charges of sodomy against the 15-year-old girl while the rest included incest, rape and other sex crimes.
Court officials said that the accused was calm when the charges were read out in court. He pleaded not guilty to the charges.
"He faces a prison sentence of over 12,000 years," Aimi Syazwani, a deputy public prosecutor, told AFP at a newly established special court for sex crimes against children in the administrative capital Putrajaya.
Officials also said that the man could be sentenced to 20 years — and caning — for each charge of sodomy. He also risks a maximum sentence of 20 years for rape and 20 years each for 30 other charges of physical attack.
The man has been denied bail by Judge Yong Zarida Sazali after prosecutors warned he might flee or threaten witnesses.
The sexual assaults came to light only when the girl revealed her ordeal to her mother after she learnt that her father was planning to take her two younger sisters away from their mother to live with him.
The victim's mother lodged a police complaint against the man, following which he was arrested on 26 July.
The crimes allegedly took place over two years after the girl's parents divorced in 2015. During the time the girl was staying with his father.