Takashimaya manager took bribes for not reporting manpower shortfall
A Singaporean in charge of Takashimaya's security department who accepted bribes was sentenced to 10 months' jail and ordered to pay a penalty of $42,500 yesterday.
Chan Kuen Thong, 64, who was senior divisional manager at Takashimaya Singapore, had engaged in a bribery scheme to cover up a shortfall in security officers at the department store, the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau said in a statement.
His duties were to source quotations from security agencies and ensure the contracted agencies were providing services in accordance with their contractual agreements.
Investigations revealed that in 2016, he was tasked with sourcing quotations because Takashimaya's existing security service provider could not fulfil the terms of its contract.
White Knights Security Services, one of three companies that responded, was awarded a one-year contract starting on Jan 1, 2017, based on Chan's recommendation.
Two additional two-year contracts were later awarded to White Knights, one on Jan 1, 2018, and the other on Jan 1 last year.
Under the contracts, White Knights was to supply Takashimaya with 18 security officers for the day shift and six for the night shift.
If there was a shortfall in the number of security officers deployed, Takashimaya was entitled to issue claims.
Investigations revealed that from the start of the first contract, White Knights director Mandhir Singh Karpal Singh faced a frequent shortfall of three to five security officers for the day shift.
In the second week of January 2017, Chan complained to Mandhir about the shortfall, which had caused some security posts to be left unmanned.
Later in the month, Chan met Mandhir and asked to be paid $4,000 every month in return for not issuing claims.
Mandhir, 30, agreed as it would not only save White Knights between $12,300 and $20,500 each month based on the average shortfall of three to five security officers, but also save him the trouble of finding more security officers for deployment at the department store.
It would also help him secure contract renewals with Takashimaya.
Between February 2017 and May last year, Mandhir paid Chan cash gratifications totalling $121,000 over 20 occasions. In return, Chan did not issue claims.
For giving and accepting gratifications, the two men were charged on March 17 this year under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
On Aug 16, Mandhir, a Singapore permanent resident, was sentenced to 10 months' jail for corruption.