Ex-Maris Stella High principal jailed nine months for misappropriating $67K

SINGAPORE - Former Maris Stella High principal Anthony Tan Kim Hock was jailed for nine months on Friday for misappropriating almost $67,000 from the school.

The 67-year-old is currently serving five months in jail for misappropriating almost $68,000 from the school's chapel fund in 2009, and will begin serving the latest sentence when his current one ends on June 1.

In the latest case, Tan admitted to nine charges of criminal breach of trust of $66,951.

The court heard he used school funds to pay for overseas trips for his friend Peter Lim, a 37-year-old tennis coach. He also used them to pay for Mr Lim's other expenses such as his tennis coaching accreditation programme, professional tennis registry renewal, and an advanced open diving course on Pulau Tioman.

On other occasions, Tan pocketed donations intended for the school.

"This money could have been used to pay for school programmes that benefited the school and its students," said District Judge Toh Yung Cheong, who took 11 other charges of criminal breach of trust, totalling almost $14,000, into consideration.

He added that Tan abused his authority by ignoring procedural safeguards laid out by the school management committee to safeguard its funds.

Instead, Tan appointed himself and his subordinate as the authorised signatories to the bank accounts holding the management committee funds.

Tan retired in 2009 after 25 years as principal of Maris Stella.