Former China tour guide Yang Yin's bid to cash out on life insurance policies blocked again

Former China tour guide Yang Yin leaving the Police Cantonment Complex on Sept 18, 2014.
Former China tour guide Yang Yin leaving the Police Cantonment Complex on Sept 18, 2014.ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

SINGAPORE - Former China tour guide Yang Yin's attempt to dip into two life insurance policies to pay for legal fees ran into another roadblock at the High Court on Wednesday.

In April, the High Court allowed him to liquidate two life insurance policies worth about $98,000 to pay for his legal fees. The policies will help cover his legal bill in a high-profile High Court suit brought against him by Madam Chung Khin Chun, 88, through her niece Hedy Mok.

The Singapore permanent resident's assets were frozen last August after Madam Mok, 61, accused him of masterminding control over her aunt's assets, estimated to be worth $40 million.

Madam Mok has appealed against the High Court decision to release the insurance policies and the appeal will be heard in March next year. While the life insurance policies are in Yang's name, Madam Mok has argued, though her lawyer, that they were bought using her aunt's money.

On Wednesday, Madam Mok also put in a new High Court application for the policies to remain out of Yang's reach until the outcome of the appeal is final. This means that Yang cannot touch the policies at least until next month when the new application is heard again.

The latest development in the High Court is the second setback that Yang faced in his attempt to cash out on the life insurance policies to pay for his legal fees.

Earlier this month, the State Court also decided not to let Yang liquidate the policies. The State Court hearing was a separate one because the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) separately seized the insurance policies last year for criminal investigations.

Yang met Madam Chung, a retired physiotherapist, in 2008 when he acted as her private guide during a China trip. A year later, he moved into her bungalow and claimed the widow wanted him to be her "grandson".

Apart from the civil court cases, Yang has been charged with falsifying receipts at his company and misappropriating $1.1 million from the estate of Madam Chung. He has been in remand since Oct 31 last year after his bail application was denied.