MAS issues prohibition orders to 2 former bank employees for fraud, dishonest conduct

MAS issues prohibition orders to 2 former bank employees for fraud, dishonest conduct

View of Monetary Authority of Singapore
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) building in Singapore. (Photo: AFP/Roslan Rahman)

SINGAPORE: The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) issued prohibition orders to two former bank employees for fraud and dishonest conduct, it said on Friday (Oct 30).

The orders, issued to Lu Chor Sheng and Tan Swee Thiam Timothy, took effect from Thursday. The cases were unrelated and both have been convicted in the State Courts, MAS added.

Lu and Tan, who received 17 and nine years respectively, are prohibited from performing any regulated activity under the Securities and Futures Act (SFA) and from providing any financial advisory service under the Financial Advises Act (FAA).

They are also prohibited from taking part in the management, acting as a director or becoming a substantial shareholder of any capital market services firm under the SFA and any financial advisory firm under the FAA.

Lu, formerly the treasury advisor of Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC), was sentenced to eight years and four months’ jail for abetment of cheating, unauthorised modification of the contents of OCBC’s system and offences under the Corruption, Drug Trafficking and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation of Benefits) Act.

He had used a friend’s OCBC accounts to “place unauthorised forward foreign exchange trades with off-market rates” in the bank’s system, which allowed him to buy lower and sell higher than prevailing market rates.

“To realise profits, Mr Lu placed additional unauthorised trades in his customers’ accounts as counterparties to the trades placed in his friends’ accounts,” MAS said.

He told his customers that these were erroneous trades and would be reversed at no loss to them. Lu also instigated his friend to impersonate his customers to place unauthorised forward foreign exchange orders with OCBC to close off unauthorised foreign exchange trades that he had placed in the customers’ accounts.

When OCBC discovered the unauthorised trades, it closed out the outstanding contracts in Lu’s customer accounts, suffering a total loss of S$3.09 million.

Lu made a profit of about S$1.09 million from his misconduct, which he used to buy foreign currencies and repay debts, MAS said.

In the second case, Tan, a former relationship manager of United Overseas Bank (UOB) had misused a friend’s bank account to make unauthorised bank transfers.

The woman, a customer of UOB, had entrusted her bank accounts, Internet banking security token and ATM card to him.

“Between March 2015 and January 2016, Mr Tan made unauthorised Internet bank transfers amounting to around S$263,500 from this customer’s UOB account to his personal bank account, in order to pay for his living expenses,” MAS said.

For this, he was convicted of criminal breach of trust under the Penal Code and offences under the Computer Misuse Act.

He was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in jail.

Source: CNA/ga

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