We thank Madam Chia Choo Tuan for her letter and her confidence in the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau's (CPIB) resolve and commitment to combat corruption (Do referral fee payments fall under corruption?, June 11).
While there are no exhaustive guidelines as to when the payment or receipt of referral fees is corrupt, much will depend on the individual facts and circumstances of the case, and the intent of the parties involved.
For example, whether such payments or receipts are properly accounted for, and whether the receivers or the givers are allowed or authorised to accept or make such payments either by their company or the regulatory bodies relating to their profession.
Each case must be assessed on its own merits to determine if it is a case of corruption.
In addition, the public should not be led to believe that payments are not corrupt simply by virtue of being "common" or "accepted business practice".
In a court of law, evidence of custom is not admissible as a defence to corruption.
The CPIB looks into all corruption complaints, including anonymous ones.
Should anyone encounter or have information on any act suspected to be corrupt, please report to the CPIB via the following channels:
- Visit or write to us at the CPIB Headquarters @ 2 Lengkok Bahru, or Corruption Reporting and Heritage Centre @ 247 Whitley Road;
- Call the duty officer at 1800-376-0000;
- Lodge an e-complaint at www.cpib.gov.sg/e-complaint; or
- E-mail us at email@example.com
Ms Clare Tan
Senior Assistant Director (Corporate Relations)
Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau