SINGAPORE - Singaporean businessman Ng Yu Zhi is facing more charges over his role in a scheme that allegedly cheated investors of at least $1.2 billion.
Ng, 34, was charged in court on Monday (Aug 30) with 20 new counts of cheating involving more than $16 million and US$200,000 (S$270,000).
This takes the total number of charges against him to 51, including those for forgery and criminal breach of trust.
The scheme, which involved nickel trading, could end up as one of the largest cases of fraud in Singapore history.
Investors were allegedly promised varying returns, depending on the various nickel trading schemes they joined.
They are said to include prominent personalities such as Vickers Venture Partners founder Finian Tan, former Law Society of Singapore president Thio Shen Yi and criminal lawyer Sunil Sudheesan.
The Commercial Affairs Department has seized about $100 million in assets from Ng, who was the managing director of trading companies Envy Global Trading (EGT) and Envy Asset Management (EAM).
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) stated in March this year that it had been informed of EAM's claim that it was applying for a licence, even though no application had been submitted. Firms intending to carry out regulated financial activities here require a licence from the MAS to do so.
EAM has been on its investor alert list since March last year.
The Straits Times reported earlier this month that various firms linked to Ng, including EAM and EGT, are in the process of being wound up or liquidated.
Ng is out on bail of $4 million and is expected to be back in court on Oct 25.
If convicted of cheating, he can be jailed for up to 10 years and fined.
He can be jailed for up to 20 years and fined if guilty of criminal breach of trust.
For each charge of forgery he is convicted of, Ng can be jailed for up to four years or fined, or both.