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City Harvest trial: Two among accused had stamps made of their signatures

Prosecution argues that these stamps were to be used on Xtron invoices, according to past emails exchanged between the accused.

SINGAPORE: Two of the City Harvest Church leaders had allowed stamps to be made of their signatures to be used on Xtron invoices in their capacity as the company's directors, it was revealed in court on Monday (Aug 4).

This was according to an email shown to the court on the first day of the fifth leg of the trial - expected to last until the end of the month.

The six church leaders are accused of misusing millions of church dollars to buy sham bonds from Xtron and Firna to bankroll the secular music career of Sun Ho, the wife of church founder Kong Hee. 

In resuming its cross-examination of former church board member John Lam, the prosecution continued its argument that Xtron - the artiste manager for Ms Ho - was not an independent, commercial entity that operates at arm's length from the church.

It produced a 2003 email from the church's Human Resource and Admin Manager which sought approval from Mr Lam and Mr Chew to make stamps of their signatures to be used on Xtron invoices "instead of running to get you to sign".

The manager had added that it was preferred that neither Deputy Senior Pastor Tan Ye Peng or former church Finance Manager Serina Wee should sign the documents "so as to keep Xtron separate from CHC".

Both Mr Lam and Mr Chew had agreed, according to the email.

"The reality is you were quite happy to rubber stamp decisions for Xtron because you knew they were made by Pastor Kong Hee and the church," charged Deputy Public Prosecutor Mavis Chionh.

She pointed out that in the first two years of its incorporation, Xtron did not have any staff because its day-to-day operations were taken care of by Ms Wee and the church staff.

Emails between some of the church leaders had also contained a proposal to withdraw money from the church building fund in order to fund Xtron and the Crossover Project.

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