Ex-director jailed 22 months for CBT involving $130,000

A former businesswoman who committed forgery and pocketed $130,000 from a jewellery company by encashing two cheques was jailed for 22 months yesterday.

Chinese national Gou Linnan, 36,was a director at W & G Jewellery, which operates a retail outlet named Chow Tai Fook Jewellery at Marina Bay Sands (MBS).

As one of the two authorised signatories of the company's bank account, she could sign and make a cheque withdrawal.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Hon Yi said between July 14 and 18 in 2011, Gou issued two cash cheques amounting to $130,000.

She wrote in the cheque book summary page that the cheques were payments to Chow Tai Fook, a Hong Kong-based jewellery supplier of W & G Jewellery.

But she encashed the cheques and spent the money on gambling.

Chow Tai Fook Jewellery confirmed that it did not receive the payments of $100,000 and $30,000 from W & G Jewellery.

She then forged a bank telegraphic transfer form in a bid to conceal her misappropriation of the $100,000.

She wrote her name as the applicant remitting $100,000 from her UOB personal account to Chow Tai Fook Jewellery's bank account in Hong Kong.

She then forged the signature of a bank employee under the "For Bank Use Only'' section to make it appear that the transaction had been carried out.

Police reports were subsequently made and she was arrested.

A second forgery charge was taken into consideration.

Gou has made partial restitution of 500,000 yuan (about $104,000) to Mr Wang Kaizhong, a director of W&G Jewellery.

Her lawyer, Mr Josephus Tan, said his client had been in a seven-year relationship with Mr Wang and went through four abortions. When the relationship went downhill, she gambled. She had hoped to win, and return the money to the company.

Mr Tan told the court that Gou married a Singaporean in 2014 and wants to start a family.

Gou could have been jailed for life or up to 20 years and fined for criminal breach of trust. The maximum penalty for forgery is 10 years' jail and a fine.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 23, 2016, with the headline 'Ex-director jailed 22 months for CBT involving $130,000'. Print Edition | Subscribe