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Singapore

Former Genneva employee jailed for cheating offences involving 3kg of gold

Former Genneva employee jailed for cheating offences involving 3kg of gold

File photo of gold bars. (Photo: iStock/brightstars)

SINGAPORE: A former sales agent at gold trading company Genneva was sentenced to 12 months' jail on Thursday (Nov 18) for cheating offences involving 3kg of gold, which she sold to a bank for more than S$200,000. 

Chen Qiaoling, 38, was convicted of two counts of cheating, with a third charge under the Corruption, Drug Trafficking, and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation of Benefits) Act taken into consideration during sentencing, police said in a news release. 

Genneva is a Singapore-registered gold investment company that sold gold bars under a buyback scheme between 2008 and 2012, promising returns of up to 36 per cent over a contract period. 

Subsequently, "customers were told to deposit their gold bars with the company for inspection purposes and promised an equivalent quantity of gold after three working days", police said. 

Genneva is believed to have collected about 3,500kg of gold from its customers.

Police said the company's head of purchasing Choo Chee Loong had been tasked to pawn gold bars collected from customers under the gold inspection scheme.

Due to limits on how much gold a person could pawn, Chen agreed to help Choo to pawn 3kg of gold by falsely stating her name on the pawn tickets as the pawner.

Chen then handed over to Choo about S$166,500 worth of loans, as well as three pawn tickets, on Aug 23, 2012.

On Sep 29, 2012, Chen falsely reported the loss of the three pawn tickets to the pawnshop, although she knew they were not lost. 

The pawnshop gave her a declaration form for her to sign and declare the loss of the tickets. She affirmed the declaration form before a Commissioner for Oaths, police said.

Chen then submitted the false declaration form to employees of the pawnshop, and "dishonestly induced" the pawnshop employees to deliver 3kg of gold to her.

She eventually sold the gold bars to the United Overseas Bank for about S$208,827, police said. 

For each count of cheating, Chen could have been jailed for up to three years, fined or both.

Source: CNA/vc

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