Man gets 30 months' jail after cheating banks of over $2.67m in loans
A man who conspired with one of his trade partners to forge invoices and cheat banks into disbursing more than $2.67 million in business loans was on Monday (April 18) sentenced to 30 months' jail.
Tay Kim Yong, 52, who was a director at food supplies business A Yong at the time of the offences, had earlier pleaded guilty to seven counts of cheating.
Sixteen other charges were considered during sentencing.
The court heard that Tay approached Tan Teck Tiang, 54, in 2019.
At the time, Tan was the director of Chiam Joo Seng Towgay Growers & Suppliers and 100 Chiam Joo Seng.
Tay said he wanted to use invoices from Tan's company to show that A Yong had purchased vegetables from it.
This would allow him to apply for a bank credit facility based on the amount reflected in the invoices.
The plan was for Tan to pass Tay the money once the loan was approved and after the bank disbursed the funds into the accounts of Tan's companies.
In an earlier court proceeding, Deputy Public Prosecutor Selene Yap said that Tay assured Tan that he would pay the banks promptly, and Tan agreed to help him as they were trade partners.
Whenever Tay needed cash, he would ask his administrative and accounts officer, known only as Jenny, to create an invoice under Tan's companies.
Tay would write down the name and details of the company, the description of the supplies, quantity, unit of measurement, unit price and total amount, and the details of the recipient's bank account, which would be one of Tan's companies' bank accounts.
His colleague would use an Excel sheet to create an invoice identical to the invoice issued by Tan's companies.
DPP Yap added that Tan would then sign the invoices as the supplier and Tay would sign off as the receiver.
After Maybank, UOB, or OCBC disbursed the money in Tan's account, he would transfer it to A Yong through an online transfer or a cheque.
A total of 23 fraudulent invoices were supplied to the banks, and Tan received 22 payouts.
The 23 comprised 13 invoices to OCBC, six invoices to UOB and four to Maybank.
OCBC disbursed about $1.46 million and recovered $1.41 million, UOB disbursed a total of $727,735.57 and recovered $727,732.57, and Maybank disbursed about $484,000 and recovered about $151,300.
The crime came to light on Jan 13, 2020, when the chief operations officer of A Yong lodged a police report saying that Tay had been falsifying and forging suppliers' invoices to the banks to receive trade financing.
Court documents do not disclose if Tan has been dealt with in court.
For each count of cheating, an offender can be jailed for up to 10 years and fined.