Man jailed for cheating seven firms of $340k in goods

The managing director of an education centre was sentenced yesterday to 3½ years' jail after duping seven companies into delivering items worth more than $340,000.

South Korean An Dae Kee, 38, who worked at Seoul Education Centre in Tanglin Shopping Centre, did not pay for any of the electronic goods and devices, which were all bought on credit.

He pleaded guilty last month to four cheating charges involving nearly $180,000.

An also admitted to two drug-related charges and one count of possessing a knife.

Another 14 charges, including cheating offences linked to the remaining amount, were considered during sentencing.

To cheat his victims, An pretended to be a representative of organisations such as education group EtonHouse and integrated lifestyle firm Amara Holdings.

The victims included electronics retailer Best Denki as well as telcos Singtel and StarHub.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Tan Hsiao Tien said that between March and May last year, An submitted to his victims purchase orders for electronic goods and devices on credit terms.

He then negotiated the orders through e-mail, phone calls and text messages. The victims, after agreeing to the terms, would deliver the goods to An.

 
 

The court heard that on most occasions, the items were delivered to couriers he had engaged.

The DPP added that An did not pay for any of the items, which were purchased on credit.

After receiving reports from the victims, the police arrested An on May 3 last year in a room at Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel in Orchard Road.

In his possession were a foldable knife and a clear glass tube that was later found to be stained with substances, including methamphetamine.

An was taken to Tanglin Police Division where he refused to give officers a sample of his urine.

He finally agreed to give a hair sample on May 9 last year and it was found to have traces of the drug.

Court documents stated that An had made a partial restitution of more than $77,000.

For each count of cheating, he could have been jailed for up to 10 years and fined.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 20, 2019, with the headline 'Man jailed for cheating seven firms of $340k in goods'. Print Edition | Subscribe