Singaporean charged over hiring foreigners without valid work passes to work at night markets

Sao Wei Loon, was charged for hiring 19 foreigners without valid work passes to work at night markets.
Sao Wei Loon, was charged for hiring 19 foreigners without valid work passes to work at night markets. PHOTO: ST GRAPHICS

SINGAPORE - A 40-year-old Singaporean, Sao Wei Loon, was charged on Thursday (June 1) over hiring 19 foreigners without valid work passes to work at night markets.

Investigations revealed that Sao hired 19 Indonesian nationals without valid work passes to work illegally as stall assistants at three pasar malam or night markets last year, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said.

The illegal employment period ranged from three days to more than three weeks, and the offence was committed between June 1 and Sept 16, 2016.

If convicted, he faces a fine of between $5,000 and $30,000 and/or up to 12 months' jail.

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The case against Sao has been adjourned to June 20.

In a separate case, a former director and a current director of logistics company SK Yap Construction, were convicted on May 2 of conspiring to hire 10 foreign workers without valid work passes.

Each director was fined in total $79,000, in default of 33 weeks' imprisonment. The offenders were also banned from employing foreign workers.

MOM advised employers that they are not allowed to hire any foreigner without first obtaining a valid work pass.

Those working in bazaars or night markets are not exempted from this requirement, MOM said.

Employers who flout the law can be fined a maximum of $30,000 and/or up to 12 months' imprisonment.

They will also be banned from employing foreign workers.

Members of the public with information about illegal employment offences can report the matter to MOM at (65) 6438 5122 or e-mail mom_fmmd@mom.gov.sg.