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Convicted 83-year-old British employer molested other FDWs, solicitors say

08 July 2021

By Daisy CL Mandap 

The judicial review filed on CB's behalf will be heard at the High Court in September 

Retired British doctor Brian Drew Apthorp had kept in his computer files videos of him engaged in sexual acts with other Filipina domestic workers.

This was according to a press release issued by lawyers for CB, the Filipina domestic worker who succeeded in getting Apthorp, her former employer, convicted of two counts of indecent assault.

Apthorp, who was remanded in custody immediately after being found guilty of the offences on Jul 2, will be sentenced at the Eastern Magistracy on Jul 15.

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In their statement, solicitors Patricia Ho and Associates said that among the evidence in police’s possession are two videos showing two FDHs “performing fellatio on Apthorp and Apthorp engaging in sexual acts with them.”

The police is said to have also kept a photo from an album kept in Apthorp’s room showing pictures of “naked women in compromising positions.”

These, said the lawyers, is evidence “which points at least to the suspicion that CB was not Apthorp’s first victim.”

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But even while they had these in their possession, the police decided not to charge Apthorp with more serious offences, including human trafficking, which would have been brought before a higher court.

"Despite requests from CB’s lawyers that the matter should be dealt with in a way which is commensurate with the gravity and heinousness of the acts committed, the Police maintained their course in prosecuting the case at the Magistrate’s Court on account of two counts of indecent assault,” said the solicitors.

“This occurred in light of their purported policy of protecting foreign domestic helpers from trafficking and exploitation…” their statement added.

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Because he was convicted in the magistracy, the “normal maximum penalty” that could be imposed on Apthorp is two years in jail and a fine of $100,000, said the statement. This could go up to 3 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $5 million if two or more indictable offences are dealt with at the same time.

The solicitors are now pursuing a case for judicial review against the decision by the Commissioner of Police and the Secretary of Justice not to file a case for human trafficking against Apthorp.

In the judicial challenge, CB will be arguing through her solicitors that the Hong Kong government “has got it wrong with respect to their interpretation of trafficking,” said the solicitors.

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The absence of a bespoke or a specific law targeting human trafficking is, in this case, the reason “why the magistracy conviction is an inadequate response," they added.

In a separate interview following Apthorp’s conviction, CB confirmed the existence of the videos and photos showing her fellow helpers in sleazy acts, which she told The SUN, were kept by the octogenarian doctor in his personal computer.

She said it was after seeing them that she decided to gather the courage to flee. 

CB says she wants justice for all the other helpers who were abused by Apthorp  

Speaking at the end of her testimony in Eastern Court in March, she said: “Hindi ko ginagawa ito para sa sarili ko kundi para sa lahat ng mga foreign domestic helper na nagtrabaho sa kanya at inabuso niya.

(I am doing this not for myself but for all the foreign domestic helpers who had worked for him and were abused by him).


The Filipina was hired by Apthorp in September 2018 after she responded to an online advertisement for a domestic helper.

"Over the course of the next 6 months, she would be sexually exploited as a tool to gratify (Apthorp's) perversions," said her solicitors' statement.

The first sexual assault happened on Sept 11, 2018, when Apthorp fondled her breasts and inserted his fingers and an instrument into her genitals under the guise of a medical check-up.

CB fled the room after that that, but decided to continue with the job after a fellow domestic helper named Janice assured her that the retired doctor did the same check on all his staff.

After that incident, the elderly man ordered CB to give him daily massages while he lay on his bed, stark naked. CB was then told to pinch the man's nipples and look into his eyes while he masturbated. 

Later came the "Whipping Thursdays" when CB was required to perform masochistic sexual acts on the employer. On these days, Apthorp would stand in front of the mirror in his bedroom and instruct CB to whip his buttocks and penis with a variety of tools.  

He gave exact instructions as to which tool was to be used and the specific number of times he was to be hit by each tool. Sometimes he would masturbate while being whipped.  

The various whips used in these sessions were among those confiscated by the police when they raided Apthorp's house.

On the days she resisted, CB said Apthorp had punished her by making her do hard physical tasks, like cutting and pulling off all the bamboo trees in his garden, then hauling them up several flights of stairs so she could dump them by the roadside.

In April 2019, CB had the chance to escape when Apthorp left Hong Kong his annual six-month stay in France. She sought help from the non-government organization, Help for Domestic Workers, which advised her to leave the employer's house and seek police help.

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