A MAN caught having sex with a mentally retarded woman in a public lavatory failed to persuade a High Court judge his 12-month jail term was too severe. Upholding the prison term, Mr Justice Bewley said the trial magistrate was right to find meat stall worker Man Ming-hing had taken advantage of the woman and that there was a need to protect people unable to look after themselves. He accepted that 18 months used as a starting point for sentence was a bit high. However, six months was not an ungenerous discount considering Man was caught in the act. Man, 39, had pleaded guilty before Magistrate Charles McRandal on May 27 to two counts of unlawful sexual intercourse with a defective. The court heard on February 11, two policemen found the woman and Man inside a female lavatory at East Kai Tak playground. Man admitted having had sex with her before, in June last year. Police inquiries revealed she was a psychiatric clinic out-patient. Counsel John Mullick submitted that the fact that a condom was worn showed his client was responsible. He said it appeared that under the Crimes Ordinance, no one could have sex with a mentally retarded woman because once one knew of her mental state and still had sexual intercourse with her, he would be committing a crime. Senior Crown Counsel Lina Chih said the offence was serious as the woman had no capacity to consent.