Metro founder's grandson on trial for drug-related charges

Ong Jenn, the 41-year-old grandson of Metro founder Ong Tjoe Kim and the son of its former group managing director Jopie Ong, arrives at the State Courts on Feb 3, 2017.
Ong Jenn, the 41-year-old grandson of Metro founder Ong Tjoe Kim and the son of its former group managing director Jopie Ong, arrives at the State Courts on Feb 3, 2017.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

SINGAPORE - A scion of the family that founded retail giant Metro Holdings appeared in court on Friday (Feb 3) morning to face drug-related charges.

Ong Jenn, the 41-year-old grandson of Metro founder Ong Tjoe Kim and the son of its former group managing director Jopie Ong, is represented by Senior Counsel Tan Chee Meng.

Ong was first charged on Nov 1, 2014 with trafficking in cannabis, as well as possession and consumption of the drug.

He is currently on trial for two of the eight drug-related charges against him.


Ong Jenn (centre), the 41-year-old grandson of Metro founder Ong Tjoe Kim and the son of its former group managing director Jopie Ong, arrives at the State Courts with his wife (left) on Feb 3, 2017. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

Ong is accused of engaging in a conspiracy with a man known as Mohamad Ismail Abdul Majid to traffick a controlled drug.

 

Mohamad Ismail was allegedly found to be in possession of a block of 92.68g of vegetable matter later found to be cannabis near a bus stop along Jurong Port Road at around 4.20pm on Oct 30, 2014.

Mohamad Ismail was also allegedly found to be in possession of one block containing 385.1g of fragmented vegetable matter later found to be a cannabis mixture.

Ong's remaining six charges have been stood down.

According to his online profile, Ong has been a business development manager at Metro Holdings since 2003. He attended Boston University's School of Management from 1996 to 2000.

He is also the founder and director of Tompang, a peer-to-peer retail platform operator. Metro Holdings was founded in 1957 by Mr Ong Tjoe Kim. It started out as a textile store at 72 High Street and is today a property development and investment group with a turnover of $145.8 million and net assets of $1.4 billion as of March 31 2015.

Ong's father, Mr Jopie Ong, was group managing director from 1973 until his death in February last year. It was under his leadership that Metro grew from a two-storey shophouse into a retail behemoth and, later, a substantial property player with interests in China, Japan and Britain.