A single mother who pled guilty earlier this month to abandoning her mentally challenged 13-year-old daughter has been handed an 18-month probation order by a Hong Kong court on Tuesday.
Sparing the woman of jail time, a judge said the ruling was based on the fact that the defendant had shown remorse and that she had enrolled herself to a counseling service, Ming Pao Daily reported.
Earlier this month, the court heard that the woman took the second of her three children home on Nov. 21 from a children’s home where the girl lived.
Two days later, they went to a cha chaan teng on their way back to the children’s home. There the woman told her daughter she needed to go to the restroom, but she never came back.
The mother later admitted in a court that she had abandoned her daughter, but insisted that it was not a premeditated act.
In passing the sentence Tuesday, the judge told the defendant not to disappear from her children again, but instead spend more time caring for them.
Probation orders are aimed at assisting offenders to re-integrate into the community as law-abiding citizens.
As for some police officers who had been accused of taking topless photos of the 13-year-girl during investigations, they were handed a sharp rebuke by the court.
The police did not have any reason to take the topless pictures as the girl had shown no apparent injuries, the judge said, upholding the contention of the defense lawyer.
The defense lawyer also alleged that the photos, which were put together with the case file, had been seen by some police constables who were unrelated to the case.
A prosecutor said earlier that some photos were taken for police internal use, but admitted that the police had neglected the girl’s privacy when they took the pictures.
Agreeing with the defense claim over the matter, the judge told the police Tuesday to improve their procedures.
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