Judge dismisses boy's appeal against assault ruling

PUBLISHED : Friday, 31 July, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 31 July, 1998, 12:00am

A 13-year-old boy who claimed he accidentally touched a girl's bottom while trying to 'play a trick' by tying her to the seat of a bus ended up with a conviction for indecent assault.

The Form Three student spent three weeks in custody after a magistrate rejected his claims that it had all been a harmless prank.

He was eventually put on probation for 18 months and yesterday failed to clear his name when his appeal against the conviction was dismissed by a judge.

Mrs Justice Verina Bokhary said he had been among four boys who boarded the No 82 bus from Chai Wan to North Point on October 13.

They headed for the top deck and sat behind two girls. During 'horseplay' between the boys, one of the girls was accidentally hit on the head. Wong Po-wing, for the boy, said the girls had abused the boys, calling them 'mental'.

It was in revenge for this that the 13-year-old tried to tie the girl to the seat using the belt of her school uniform, he told the judge.

Mr Wong argued that the magistrate had failed to consider whether the touching of the girl's buttocks, even if deliberate, amounted to indecency.

But the Court of First Instance judge said that once accidental touching had been ruled out, the act amounted to an indecent assault.