Ex-GM of AMKTC faces graft charges

Wong Chee Meng (left), a former general manager and secretary of Ang Mo Kio Town Council, faces 55 counts of corruptly accepting gratification from Chia Sin Lan, the director and shareholder of 19-ANC Enterprise and 19-NS2 Enterprise.
Wong Chee Meng (above), a former general manager and secretary of Ang Mo Kio Town Council, faces 55 counts of corruptly accepting gratification from Chia Sin Lan, the director and shareholder of 19-ANC Enterprise and 19-NS2 Enterprise.ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

He allegedly took bribes amounting to $107k from firms' directors to advance business interests with town council

A former general manager and secretary of Ang Mo Kio Town Council (AMKTC), who allegedly took bribes amounting to $107,000 from the directors of two building companies, was charged with corruption yesterday.

Wong Chee Meng, 58, who is also known as Victor Wong, faces 55 counts of corruptly accepting gratification from Chia Sin Lan, the director and shareholder of 19-ANC Enterprise and 19-NS2 Enterprise, and Ms Yip Fong Yin, also a director of 19-NS2, in exchange for advancing the business interests of the companies with the town council, State Courts documents show.

The alleged bribes included overseas remittances to his mistress in China, a job for his daughter-in-law, entertainment expenses at KTV lounges, spa treatments and stays at budget hotels.

The alleged offences took place between December 2014 and September 2016.

Alleged co-conspirator Chia, 62, is accused of 54 counts of offering bribes to Wong. He also faces one count of abetment for allegedly conspiring with Ms Yip to bribe Wong by making arrangements for Wong to receive a $13,500 discount on a car he bought.

Chia's companies each faces one charge of corruption for conspiring to bribe Wong to advance their business interests with the town council.

According to the Building and Construction Authority's directory, both businesses are licensed builders and registered to carry out repair and redecoration works.

As general manager, Wong was the most senior executive in the town council, but his employer was CPG Facilities Management, the town council's managing agent.

He was removed from duty after the town council received a complaint about him in September 2016 over "the way he handles contracts and dealings in the town council".

As general manager, Wong was the most senior executive in the town council, but his employer was CPG Facilities Management, the town council's managing agent.

He was removed from duty after the town council received a complaint about him in September 2016 over "the way he handles contracts and dealings in the town council".

He was later investigated by the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB).

The town council appointed a new general manager, Mr Ang Boon Peng, last April, about five months after Wong was removed.

Wong's lawyer Tang Shangwei and Chia's lawyer Michael Loh said that both men intend to claim trial, and each of them is out on a $100,000 bail.

Their passports have been impounded, and their case will be heard on April 11.

If convicted, each could be fined up to $100,000 and jailed for a maximum of seven years on each charge.

The companies could each face a fine of up to $100,000 under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The CPIB said in a statement yesterday that Singapore adopts a zero-tolerance approach towards corruption, and it "takes a serious view of any corrupt practices and will not hesitate to take action against any party involved in such acts".


Where the money reportedly went to

For almost two years, Wong Chee Meng, 58, the former general manager of Ang Mo Kio Town Council, allegedly accepted bribes from building firm director Chia Sin Lan, 62.

The alleged bribes, to advance Chia's business interests, added up to about $107,000.

They include:

• Remittances to Wong's mistress in China that amounted to $30,600.

• Restaurant meals that cost close to a total of $5,000.

• A $13,500 discount on a Toyota Corolla Altis that Wong had bought.

• A "spa treatment" in Geylang that cost around $1,070.

• Stays at Fragrance Hotel and Hotel 81 which cost, respectively, about $35 and $30. Both are budget hotels.

• Entertainment expenses of more than $40,000 at various KTV lounges and nightclubs in Singapore.

• A job for Wong's daughter-in-law Le Thi Hien at 4-Ever Engineering firm. Chia's company 19-ANC Enterprise paid a total of $8,247.67 in salary for her between March and August 2016,

• Charges amounting to $2,527.76 for Wong's use of an M1 mobile phone line.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 15, 2018, with the headline 'Ex-GM of AMKTC faces graft charges'. Print Edition | Subscribe