Ex-assistant company GM jailed 31 months for forgery

SINGAPORE - A former assistant general manager of a freight forwarding company who forged cheques amounting to almost $250,000 was jailed for 31 months on Monday.

Suffiyandi Shaiful Alfiah took about most of the money while $89,469 was paid to his alleged co-conspirator. He returned $5,000.

The 35-year-old pleaded guilty to 30 counts of forgery for the purpose of cheating, and abetting his former colleague Ahmad Zainol Asyikin Abdol Majid to forge cheques between 2010 and 2012. Suffiyandi had worked with Sin LCL Consol for about eight years until May 2012 when he failed to report for work.

Zainol, 34, whose case is in pre-trial conference stage, was an import assistant and responsible for accounting matters including preparing cheques. He worked from 2008 to 2010.

After he left the company, he allegedly asked Suffiyandi to help him forge cheques. Suffiyandi agreed.

A district court heard that Suffiyandi took cheques from the company's office cabinet and made cheques payable to cash or printed his name as the payee.

He forged the signatures of two staff members who were the authorised joint signatories to the company's cheques.

To forge their signatures, he went through the company's old files and found documents with their signatures. He then photocopied their signatures and referred to the photocopy whenever he signed the cheques, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Eunice Lim.

He spent the money on his motorcycle, various bills and other expenses.

The total amount in the 30 offences and other acts of forgery he committed is $247,831.

The company's director lodged a police report on July 4, 2012, about a month after he received a returned cheque. The two signatories whose signatures were purportedly on the cheque confirmed that they did not sign it.

He discovered that there were several unauthorised cheques from the company's bank statements.

Suffiyandi's sentence was backdated to Jan 27 this year. The father of one could have been jailed for up to 10 years and fined on each charge.