Bankrupt doctor starts serving jail term for money transfers to lover

Andrew Chee Weng Kheong, a general practitioner, leaving the State Courts on March 7,  2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE
Andrew Chee Weng Kheong, a general practitioner, leaving the State Courts on March 7,  2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A general practitioner who once claimed to be the "poorest doctor in Singapore" started serving a 10-week jail term on Monday after the High Court dismissed his appeal for transferring more than $190,000 to his lover and her brother within five years before he was made bankrupt.

Andrew Chee Weng Kheong, 58, was found guilty by a district court in March this year of four charges under the Bankruptcy Act. He was acquitted of five similar charges involving $515,680.

In March 2003, Chee deposited Toto winnings of $671,914 into a joint account with his wife. But in March 2004, a month after his wife filed for divorce, he made a flurry of transfers from this account to his lover, clinic assistant Lew Yek Yeong.

Chee was declared a bankrupt in October 2006 after his ex-wife, Ms Elizabeth Lim Choo Suan, applied for a bankruptcy order after he failed to pay her share of matrimonial assets.

On Monday, he appealed against his conviction and sentence, maintaining that the transfers were merely repayments to Ms Lew for loans he had taken from her. "It would be sad if the court allows my ex-wife to destroy me," he said.

But Deputy Public Prosecutor April Phang argued that Chee had failed to produce any documentary evidence of the repayment schedule of the alleged loans.

Chee has previously been jailed several times after his ex-wife took out contempt of court proceedings to send him to prison for not complying with a court order to pay her maintenance. At one hearing, he insisted that he was unable to pay as he was the "poorest doctor in Singapore".