Four former Singapore Power technicians charged with graft

Four former Singapore Power technicians were charged with taking bribes from a regional subsidiary of a Chinese construction company.
Four former Singapore Power technicians were charged with taking bribes from a regional subsidiary of a Chinese construction company.PHOTO: ST GRAPHIC

SINGAPORE - Four former Singapore Power technicians were charged on Thursday (Nov 26) with taking bribes from a regional subsidiary of a Chinese construction company.

The men - Mohd Kutty Hassan, 62, Jasman Tiron, 55, Mohamad Suffiandi Mohamad Suhaimi, 30 and Muhamad Ridhuan Ramli, 33 - are alleged to have received bribes amounting to between $50 and $450.

The kickbacks were in relation to SP Powergrid and SP Services' inspection of China Construction South Pacific Development's electrical board installations at three locations.

SP Powergrid and SP Services are subsidiaries of Singapore Power, one of the largest companies in Singapore. It owns and operates electricity and gas transmission and distribution businesses in Singapore and Australia.

China Construction South Pacific Development (CCSP) is a regional subsidiary of China State Construction Engineering, one of the world's largest construction companies.

A pre-trial conference for Kutty, who faces one count of accepting a $50 bribe some time last year, has been fixed for Dec 21. He was represented in court by lawyer Peter Fernando.

Kutty allegedly took the kickback from CCSP employee Aung Myat Wynn, as a reward for not creating difficulties for CCSP in Ridhuan's inspection of its electrical board installation at Block 667A Punggol Drive.

Jasman, Suffiandi and Ridhuan, who were not represented, told the court that they intended to plead guilty. Their cases will be heard again on Dec 10.

Jasman faces two counts of receiving $100 from CCSP employee Li Chen, some time between 2011 and 2013, as an inducement for not creating difficulties for CCSP in the former's inspection of its electrical board installations at Block 55 Havelock Road and Block 780E Woodlands Cresent.

Suffiandi and Ridhuan each face one count of receiving a $200 reward and a $450 inducement respectively from Aung Myat Wynn, for not creating difficulties for CCSP in Ridhuan's inspection of its electrical board installation at Block 667A Punggol Drive sometime last year.

A Singapore Power spokesman said it conducted an internal inquiry after receiving a complaint received against the four men, and later referred the case to the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB).

The four resigned or were dismissed by the company between April and September this year.

A CPIB spokesman said that it takes a serious view of graft, and will not hesitate to take action against any party involved in it.

If convicted, the four technicians face up to five years' jail, a fine of up to S$100,000, or both.