Ex-CAAS technical officer jailed 15 months for corruption

Between October 2008 and early 2011, Goh accepted bribes totalling $43,780.
Between October 2008 and early 2011, Goh accepted bribes totalling $43,780.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE -A former employee of Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) and Changi Airport Group (CAG) was jailed for 15 months on Thursday for corruption.

In return for accepting bribes, Henry Goh Keng Hwee had used false quotations to justify his recommendations to award contracts to the giver's company.

Goh, 45, unemployed, had pleaded guilty to three charges of corruptly accepting $4,700, $20,000 and $15,000 from Mr Kang Leong Chuan, a director of Fire-Mech, in return for helping the company secure multiple contracts with CAAS/CAG.

He had also admitted to six charges of knowingly deceiving the organisations with quotations that were not intended to be genuine offers.

Between October 2008 and early 2011, he accepted bribes totalling $43,780 for contracts for fire protection systems at Changi Airport Terminal 2.

Goh, who joined as a technical officer in 2001, was in charge of the maintenance of the air-conditioning systems at Changi Airport and his duties included sourcing quotations from contractors for maintenance work.

When Changi Airport was privatised in July 2009, he was transferred from CAAS to CAG and became an associate engineer.

Goh first met Mr Kang in late 2004 or early 2005 when the latter was installing a sprinkler system at T2.

In 2008, noticing that Goh looked troubled, Kang said he could help Goh with his financial difficulties. He said if Goh gave him a contract from CAAS, he would pass him bribes in return.

Mr Kang suggested giving him 10 per cent of his profits from each job obtained with Goh's influence.

Goh thought about it and accepted the offer a few days later.

The court heard that Goh would invite Mr Kang to view the site if there was work required. Mr Kang would then compute the costing for the work, and build the bribe quantum into the costing. He would then provide a quotation from Fire-Mech to Goh.

For small value purchase that required three quotes, Mr Kang would provide them, with another two quotations from different companies, priced higher than Fire-Mech's.

Goh was aware that these two additional quotations came from companies which had no intention of doing the job required by CAAS or CAG.

Goh, whose services was terminated in October 2011, paid back $36,000 to CAG in May this year. He surrendered $9,000 to the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau.

District Judge Jasvender Kaur generally agreed with the prosecution's submissions on the aggravating factors. She said just because Goh was not a public servant from July 2009 did not mean that he deserved a more lenient sentence.

She termed his offence as a "severe breach of duty" which took place over more than two years.

Goh, represented by Mr S. Balamurugan, could have been fined up to $100,000 and/or jailed for up to five years on each charge.