Former exec assistant jailed for criminal breach of trust of $246K and computer misuse

SINGAPORE - A 47-year-old former executive assistant was jailed for nine months on Monday for misappropriating $138,000 which was meant to pay her employer's income tax.

Karen Teo Choo Hwa also logged on to her boss's Singapore Airlines Krisflyer membership account to redeem miles for two business class tickets to San Francisco worth more than $30,000.

She had pleaded guilty to criminal breach of trust for making a cheque for $138,492 payable to herself when she was employed by Take-Two Asia in Goldbell Tower along Scotts Road on July 9, 2009.

She committed the computer misuse on Mr Jean Hubert Francois Larenaudie's Krisflyer membership account on July 20, 2010.

The court heard that as part of her duties, she was entrusted with the victim's personal pre-signed cheques along with the electronic personal identification number access to several net-based applications including Singapore Airlines' Krisflyer membership account .

After encashing the cheque for $138,492, she used the money for her own expenditure.

As his personal assistant, Mr Larenaudie had given her the password so that she could book tickets for him online.

But the victim was not aware that she had used the account to get tickets for herself until he found out during a routine check.

When confronted, she confessed that she had redeemed the tickets for herself and her boyfriend.

She has made full restitution to the company.

Three other similar charges of criminal breach of trust involving $77,083 were taken into consideration.

She could have been jailed for up to seven years and/or fined for criminal breach of trust, and fined up to $5,000 and/or jailed for up to two years for computer misuse.