updated 15 Mar 2013, 13:01
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Wed, Oct 24, 2012
The Straits TImes
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Shanghai toddler calls Terence Cao daddy

The 19-month-old girl called him "dad", and he smiled.

Later, he fed her cake.

Actor Terence Cao finally came face to face with his former lover and her toddler last Friday, after the Chinese woman alleged he had abandoned her after fathering the child, said Lianhe Zaobao.

Mother and daughter went home to Shanghai last Saturday, but the woman said they would return to Singapore for a DNA test for the child later.

The 26-year-old mother, identified only by her family name Shi, had arrived here with her daughter about two weeks ago.

Cao, 45, showed up at the hotel they were staying at last Friday morning, after Shi's interview with Zaobao was published, said the newspaper. The actor, who was accompanied by a burly man, then took her and her child to a law firm in his car.

At the firm, the former couple arranged for the girl to have a DNA test in the hotel later that day, said Zaobao. But the test was called off, after Shi and her child returned to the hotel to find reporters waiting for them.

Shi, a former manager of a wine company, said she had not expected the intense media interest and had to hide in her room.

"My daughter hasn't eaten rice for two days. She's been eating biscuits," she told Zaobao.

Last Saturday, after she decided to head home, reporters followed her to the airport.

In another interview with Zaobao before she left, she said her meeting with Cao on Friday had been "okay".

She said her child was not awkward around him although she had never met him. Instead, the girl just did as she was told and called him dad.

The trio were together for about two hours that morning, said Zaobao. At one point, they were at a cafe close to the law firm and Cao was photographed spooning food into the toddler's mouth.

Later, asked for a comment as they were leaving the firm, he said: "I'm not ready. Please give me time to respond."

He then turned to Shi and asked: "You happy now?"

By her account, she met him at a party in Shanghai in May 2010 and they had a one-night stand.

One month later, he invited her to spend time with him in Singapore and she stayed at his home for two weeks, she said.

In July 2010, she realised she was pregnant and told him. He told her to get an abortion and she almost went along with it, she said.

Her mother protested, however, and said she expected him to fly to Shanghai to explain himself first. But Cao did not show up and told Shi to keep the baby, she said.

Afterwards, he mostly ignored her but he would send her texts, probably when he was drunk, asking to see pictures of the baby, she added.

Cao's former girlfriends include actress Jacelyn Tay. They dated for six years before breaking up in 1998.

In April 2009, he announced his wedding plans. He said he would marry his girlfriend, a non-actress who is more than 10 years his junior.

But in June 2010, he said they had split up.

The star has a reputation as a ladies' man, but he has said he has never been in love with two women at the same time. According to him, it is always the girlfriends who asked to break up, not him.

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