Man jailed for abetting two others to cheat bank of mortgage loans

SINGAPORE - A former property agent was jailed for six months on Tuesday for helping two others cheat OCBC Bank of mortgage loans totalling more than $600,000.

Sulaimi Hanafi, 53, admitted to two of four charges involving $170,400 and $168,000.

His co-conspirators were mobile bank executive Winnie Goh Li Ching and Mohamad Alwan, who have been dealt with.

Goh, 37, submitted false Central Provident Fund statements of applicants to deceive OCBC into believing that they earned enough money to qualify for a bank loan to buy HDB properties.

A district court heard that Sulaimi was with PN Realty, also known as PropNex, at the time, and was part of a loosely affiliated group of agents at PropNex named Hana Mohd.

In 2006, Commercial Affairs Department received information that forged income documents were submitted to OCBC in support of mortgage loan applications through Goh, who was then employed by OCBC.

Investigation showed that in 2005, some of Sulaimi's clients, who were low or moderate income earners, did not qualify for loans to buy property.

Sulaimi then sought help from the other agents at Hana Mohd group. He approached the group's personal assistant Mohamad, who agreed to help by conspiring with him to cheat the bank by forging income documents.

Mohamad did so by inflating the income in the documents such that it was within the eligible salary range before submitting them to Goh.

On Sept 1, 2005, Goh submitted false CPF statements in the name of an applicant and deceived OCBC into believing that the applicant and his wife earned enough to be eligible for the housing loan. The bank paid out $170,400.

OCBC Bank was similarly duped into approving and disbursing a mortgage loan of $168,000 in 2006 to another couple to buy an HDB flat.

Goh was jailed for five years in 2011 for her role in the multi-million dollar housing loan scam, while Mohamad was sentenced to three years' jail last year on forgery charges.