Home baker fined $10,000 for giving false information to obtain Government grant

She falsely declared to Iras that she had three local employees, although she worked on her own.
She falsely declared to Iras that she had three local employees, although she worked on her own. PHOTO: ST GRAPHICS

SINGAPORE - A self-employed baker was fined $10,000 and ordered to pay a penalty of $27,000 on Friday (Dec 11) for providing false information to obtain a Productivity and Innovation Credit (PIC) cash payout of $9,000 for her business.

Junaidah Abu Samah, 42, pleaded guilty to one charge of PIC fraud under the Income Tax Act. She was the sole proprietor of Jas Delight, which sold home-made cream puffs and rolled cakes.

In 2013, she signed and submitted a PIC cash payout application form, which would allow her to claim part of the cost of buying automation equipment worth $15,000.

To fulfil the conditions of the claim, she declared falsely to the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (Iras) that she had three local employees, although she worked on her own. She also claimed to have made Central Provident Fund contributions of $18 to each of them in the last month of Jas Delight's financial year.

Investigations by Iras later revealed that she had sought the permission of her acquaintances to use their names in the PIC cash payout application form.

Iras takes a serious view of any attempts by claimants, vendors or consultants to defraud the government, it said in a statement.

Those convicted of PIC abuse face a maximum jail term of five years, a fine of up to $50,000 or both. A penalty of up to four times the amount of cash payout fraudulently obtained will also be imposed.