Tradenation luxury goods scam: Two men to plead guilty to helping fugitive couple flee Singapore
Mohamad Fazli Abdul Rahman and Mohamed Alias are accused of helping Pi Jiapeng and Siriwipa Pansuk to flee Singapore while the couple was under police investigation.
SINGAPORE: Two men accused of helping a fugitive couple allegedly involved in the Tradenation luxury goods scam to flee Singapore have said that they intend to plead guilty.
Malaysians Mohamad Fazli Abdul Rahman, 38, and Mohamed Alias, 40, appeared before a district court on Friday (Aug 5).
Mohamad Fazli was given a new charge of conspiring with lorry driver Mohamed Alias to arrange for Siriwipa Pansuk to hide in the container compartment of a Malaysia-registered lorry.
He was previously charged with a similar offence of helping Pansuk's husband, Pi Jiapeng, to escape the country.
Mohamed Alias also faces two charges of helping the couple flee Singapore by driving the lorry at Tuas Checkpoint on Jul 4.
On Friday, the prosecution informed the court that Alias could also be charged with harbouring an offender. They sought an adjournment of two weeks to finalise their position on the charges.
Both men remain in remand as no bail has been offered to them. The prosecution said their flight risk was high as they were able to facilitate illegal smuggling of people out of Singapore.
They will return to court later in August.
Arrest warrants and Interpol red notices have been issued against Pi and Pansuk, after at least 180 police reports involving two companies, Tradenation and Tradeluxury, were made since June.
The complainants said they made advance payments for luxury watches or bags, but did not receive the products.
While some media reports said the total value of the undelivered luxury watches and bags was S$32 million, CNA understands that victims who made police reports have not received goods worth at least S$20 million as of Jul 17.
Singaporean Pi, 26, was arrested on Jun 27 for his suspected involvement in cheating offences. His passport was impounded and he was released on bail on Jun 29.
Thai national Pansuk, 27, was also assisting the police with investigations and surrendered her passport to officers on Jun 30. Both subsequently became uncontactable.
According to Interpol, Pi was born in Fujian, China, while Pansuk is from Roi Et, a province in central north-eastern Thailand.