Salesman jailed 6 years for taking $800,000 worth of cash, mobile phones from shop

Chan Kum Chuen was jailed for six years after he pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal breach of trust.
Chan Kum Chuen was jailed for six years after he pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal breach of trust.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Over a one-year period, a salesman working at a mobile phone shop in Toa Payoh took over 820 mobile phones from the store, unbeknownst to his employer, and sold them for nearly $630,000 in cash. He also unlawfully pocketed nearly $175,000 in cash from his employer.

He spent the $804,585 in ill-gotten money on his nightlife activities.

On Friday (Jan 29), 31-year-old man Chan Kum Chuen was jailed for six years after he pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal breach of trust.

Another count of the same was taken into consideration during sentencing.

A district court heard that Chan worked as a sales assistant at Callmobile's outlet at Block 184, Toa Payoh Central. His duties included managing the outlet, selling phones and collecting stocks of new phones from suppliers.

Once new phones arrived at the shop, Chan was supposed to record the number of phones.

But out of greed, he would keep a few phones and record a fewer number for every delivery. He would later sell the phones he misappropriated at second-hand shops.

He sold off 823 mobile phones, worth a total of $629,544, between Dec 1, 2013, and Nov 30, 2014.

Chan would also take money from the cash register that was meant for paying customers who traded-in their old phones.

He would do this early in the morning when he opened the shop and was alone in the store.

He would cover up the missing money in the register with cash proceeds from customers of genuine transactions during the day.

As Chan was in charge of tabulating daily sales proceeds at the shop at the end of the day, he was also able to cover up his offences.

But a shortfall was discovered by Callmobile's operations manager during a stock check one day, and an audit confirmed that he had been siphoning cash and phones.

For committing criminal breach of trust as a servant, Chan could have been jailed for up to 15 years and fined.