Man jailed for forging cheque

A man who forged a company cheque while out on bail to await sentencing for cheating offences was jailed for a total of 18 months yesterday on two charges.

Former accounts executive Goh Jun Jie forged a DBS cheque for $8,900 by altering the payee's name from AG Power Engineering to that of his wife, Li Hanshu.

The couple agreed that Goh, 28, would alter the cheque and Li would give $4,400 to her husband.

Goh admitted to forgery and another charge of falsely declaring he had lost his Singapore passport, so he could obtain a replacement one.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Alexander Woon said Goh was working at Shangri-La's Rasa Sentosa Resort and Spa when he forged the cheque on July 2 last year. He took the cheque home and altered it, putting Li's name in the payee field. The next day, hedeposited the cheque.

On May 30 this year, he was arrested on his return from Chengdu, China, where he was visiting his wife, a Chinese national. As a condition of bail, his passport was impounded. On June 8, he declared to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority that he had lost his passport. He collected his replacement passport and was arrested at Changi Airport later that day while trying to flee.

The court heard that Goh had prior convictions. In 2010, he was fined for criminal breach of trust and was jailed for six months for cheating last year. About four months later, he committed a CBT offence involving $18,018. Labelling him a recalcitrant and unrepentant offender, DPP Woon said Goh deserved a significantly higher jail term.

Goh's lawyer, Ms Cai Cheng Ying, said the offence arose out of a heated quarrel with his wife, who was then pregnant, and financial need.

Goh could have been jailed for up to 15 years and fined for forgery, and fined up to $10,000 and jailed for up to 10 years for the offence under the Passports Act.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 29, 2015, with the headline 'Man jailed for forging cheque'. Print Edition | Subscribe