The man who was caught on video trying to kiss a young girl on his lap with his hand under her dress at a funfair pleaded guilty at the Sessions Court in Sungai Petani.
Odd-job worker Tan Seong Hee, 44, admitted to the charge on Feb 1 although at first, it was unclear what his plea had been.
After the court interpreter read out the charge to him in Chinese, Tan mumbled inaudibly and judge Priscilla Hemalini Nadarajan stood down the proceedings for a short while.
After the court reconvened, Tan, who was unrepresented, pleaded guilty.
Priscilla ordered that the accused be taken for psychiatric evaluation and denied him bail.
The court set March 1 for sentencing.
The offence, under Section 14(a) of the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017 for physical sexual assault on a child, provides for a jail sentence of up to 20 years and whipping, upon conviction.
Declining to be named, Tan’s father told reporters later that he advised his son to plead guilty.
He said his son had known the girl for a long time and was “like a stepfather” to her.
“She even slept in his house in the past,” he said.
Tan was recorded kissing the child in front of a crowd and fondling the girl’s chest under her dress.
He committed the offence at a funfair site, which was next to the Kuala Muda district police headquarters at 11pm on Jan 20.
Following the viral video, the girl’s mother lodged a police report and Tan was arrested the same day.