SINGAPORE: Former private banker Yeo Jiawei, who has been accused of money laundering and cheating offences allegedly linked to a probe into Malaysia's troubled state fund 1MDB, had another charge tendered against him on Thursday (May 12).
Yeo's latest charge is for forgery. He allegedly fraudulently signed a reference letter to the anti-money laundering branch of Citibank to facilitate the transfer of US$11.95 million (S$16.3 million) to Affinity Equity International Partners.
This is the third week in a row that new charges have been levelled aginst Yeo. He now faces a total of seven counts, including charges of money laundering and cheating involving millions of dollars, and for perverting the course of justice.
The prosecution, led by Second Solicitor General Kwek Mean Luck said investigations had reached a "significant" point, urging the court to allow Yeo's continued remand.
Yeo's lawyer Mr Philip Fong objected to this, saying Yeo had been remanded for close to a month. "The right to remand is not an unlimited right nor can it be exercised indefinitely," Mr Fong argued.
Mr Kwek said investigators' work has been made more difficult due to the "enormous effort that has been put into concealing the hands of those involved".
District Judge Christopher Goh agreed to Yeo's remand for another week, and supported Yeo's lawyer in allowing time with his client.
The judge also told both sides to make arrangements for Yeo's three-year-old daughter, who has not seen her father for close to a month, to visit him in prison. As Yeo's parents and wife are under investigation for money laundering, the have not been allowed any communication with Yeo.
Yeo's case will next be mentioned on May 19.
The second man charged in connection with the 1MDB probe is Kelvin Ang. He was charged on Apr 20 under the Prevention of Corruption Act for bribing a research analyst of an equity research company S$3,000 to "expedite the preparation of a favourable valuation report".
Ang was granted bail of S$100,000 on May 9. His case will next be mentioned on Jun 30.