Three men charged with cheating IBM of more than S$160,000

Three men charged with cheating IBM of more than S$160,000

A man stands near an IBM logo at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona
File photo of an IBM logo. (Photo: Reuters/Sergio Perez)

SINGAPORE: Three men were charged on Tuesday (Dec 29) for cheating, falsification and corruption offences, with several of the charges related to an attempt to cheat IBM of more than S$160,000.

The first man, Tang Li Ming Clive, 37, was director of WCT Systems and WCT Holdings Group at the time of the offences.

The second man, Peter Chua Hua Seng, 42, was director of Skylight Holdings.

The third man, Joemario Lim Ruiyang, 28, was director of Fortune Coal & Energy and Champion Corporate Consultants.

DISHONESTLY INDUCING PAYMENT FROM IBM

The men had allegedly conspired to cheat and dishonestly induce IBM Capital Singapore to pay Skylight Holdings S$160,500 for a server and 15 mobile phones sometime in end 2017 or early 2018, said the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB).

This was done by deceiving IBM into believing that WCT Holdings had made the purchase, which did not exist.

For this, the men each faced one charge for the offence of cheating and dishonestly inducing a delivery of property.

FALSIFICATION OF ACCOUNTS

Chua had allegedly falsified a delivery order in Skylight’s letterhead, claiming that the server and 15 mobile phones had been delivered to WCT Holdings’ office.

Lim then collected the said falsified delivery order from Chua and passed it to Tang to sign, acknowledging the delivery of the items, which Tang did despite there not being any.

Additionally, Chua had also allegedly prepared a falsified tax invoice in Skylight’s letterhead to bill IBM S$160,500 for the server and 15 mobile phones purportedly delivered to WCT Holdings.

For this, Chua faced two charges for falsification of accounts, with Lim and Tang each facing one charge for abetment.

DISBURSING THE FUNDS

In order to legitimately disburse the funds Skylight received from IBM to WCT Holdings, Tang had allegedly prepared a falsified tax invoice in WCT Holdings’ letterhead to falsely state that Skylight had purchased equipment from WCT Holdings.

This was allegedly done on Chua's instructions, which Tang received through Lim.

For this, Tang faced one charge for the falsification of accounts, with Chua and Lim facing one abetment charge each.

Lim had also allegedly prepared a falsified tax invoice in Champion Corporate Consultants' letterhead to legitimise the disbursement from Skylight to Fortune Coal & Energy, which Lim is a director of.

This was also allegedly done on Chua's instructions.

For this, Lim faced one charge for the falsification of accounts, with Chua facing one charge for abetment.

Separately, Tang was also charged by the Singapore Police Force for instigating an unknown Chinese male to commit forgery for the purpose of cheating.

TANG'S CORRUPTION OFFENCES

Tang also faced three separate corruption charges involving three other individuals across three incidents dating back to 2016 and 2017.

In the first incident, sometime in or around November and December 2016, Tang had given a gratification of S$250 to San Jose Ronnel Dela Cruz, a project executive with Wine Trade Asia.

This was done as a reward to recommend the award of a contract to WCT Systems for the replacement of an exhaust motor at Wine Connection restaurant at Cuppage Road.

In the second incident, sometime in or around April and May 2017, Tang had corruptly agreed to give a gratification of S$1,000 to Lee Soo Peng, a project director with Vivere Design Studios.

This was done as a reward for recommending the award of a contract for the installation of a fire suppression system at Ding Xin Coffee Shop to City Exhaust Systems - another company of which Tang was formerly a director.

In the third incident, on Nov 14, 2017, Tang had knowingly given false information to a CPIB senior special investigator.

The three individuals connected with Tang's corruption charges were earlier charged and convicted.

Tan Yi Jing, Felicia, a 31-year-old Singaporean woman, received two corruption charges and was fined S$7,500 on Sep 4, 2020.

In the first incident, Tan, who was a sales manager of WCT Systems at the time, had abetted Tang by intentionally aiding him to corruptly give gratification to Dela Cruz.

In the second incident, she had also corruptly offered gratification of S$1,000 to Lee.

Dela Cruz, a 41-year-old Philippine national, was fined S$1,000 and ordered to pay a penalty of S$250 on Dec 3 for an offence connected with the first incident - corruptly obtaining gratification from Tan.

In connection with the second incident, Lee, 49, was sentenced to a S$7,000 fine on Apr 2, 2020 for the offence of corruptly agreeing to accept gratification from Tan.

Tang intends to plead guilty on Jan 28, while Chua and Lim will return to court next month.

"Singapore adopts a zero tolerance approach towards corruption and other criminal activities such as cheating and the falsification of accounts," said CPIB.

Any person who is convicted of a corruption offence can be fined up to S$100,000 or jailed up to 5 years, or both.

Any person who is convicted of cheating or the falsification of accounts can be jailed for up to 10 years, and also fined.

Source: CNA/ic/ad

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