Brompton bike trial: Court orders NParks officer to give defence, trial resumes on Apr 14

National Parks Board (NParks) assistant director Bernard Lim Yong Soon leaving the State Courts on March 26, 2014. Lim has been ordered by a district court to give his defence, after it found enough evidence against him to continue with the tria
National Parks Board (NParks) assistant director Bernard Lim Yong Soon leaving the State Courts on March 26, 2014. Lim has been ordered by a district court to give his defence, after it found enough evidence against him to continue with the trial, which began on March 11. -- ST FILE PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

National Parks Board (NParks) assistant director Bernard Lim Yong Soon has been ordered by a district court to give his defence, after it found enough evidence against him to continue with the trial, which began on March 11.

The court ruled on Thursday that prosecutors had made out a prima facie case against him for lying to auditors.

Lim, 42, oversaw a controversial $57,200 deal for 26 foldable bicycles in 2012, from supplier Bikehop. He is accused of lying to the National Development Ministry (MND) on July 18, 2012 about not knowing Bikehop's director Lawrence Lim Chun How, before the firm put in the sole bid for the contract.

Nine witnesses, including Mr Lawrence Lim and the auditors whom the accused allegedly lied to, have taken the stand over six days of trial.

Mr Lawrence Lim, the first witness, testified that he and Lim had actually met at a cycling event in 2011. He told the court that Lim tipped the Bikehop director off about the tender, revealed confidential information such as the budget, and later told him over the phone to not to tell anybody about their relationship.

The MND auditors testified that Lim told them at a July 18 meeting that he and Lim met only in March 2012. Anti-graft officers, meanwhile, testified that Lim had said he had lied because he feared being disciplined.

Lim, who has been suspended from his job, can be jailed for up to a year and fined up to $5,000 if convicted. His lawyers told the court on Thursday that Lim will take the stand to give evidence for his defence. The trial resumes on April 14.