City Harvest Church member Chew Eng Han's application for an elite British lawyer to defend him has been rejected.
Among other reasons, Justice V. K. Rajah told the court that he felt the requirements for such an application had not been met, and that insufficient efforts had been made by Chew to engage a relevant expert. He said there were "a substantial number of more than competent counsel" that Chew could have contacted.
Chew, 52, told The Straits Times shortly after that he was now left with "no choice" but to "be open to anything" in his choice for counsel.
He is one of the six City Harvest church leaders charged last June with conspiring to cheat the church of millions of dollars. They are alleged to have funnelled $24 million into sham bond investments to further the career of senior pastor Kong Hee's pop singer wife. The six are also said to have misappropriated another $26.6 million to cover up the first sum.