Two men fined over bribes to get contracts

Two directors of an event management company, who offered a total of $2,400 in bribes to secure business contracts, were each fined $5,400 yesterday.

Aw Ke Hong, 35, and Lee Chee Wee, 36, had each earlier pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiring to corruptly give a bribe to another individual, Liu Weide, 31.

The two men had also each admitted to two counts of conspiring to make false entries in their company's profit and loss statements so as to falsely account for the bribes as expenses.

Four other similar charges - two for giving bribes to Liu and two involving the falsification of financial statements - were taken into consideration during sentencing by Senior District Judge Ong Hian Sun.

At the time of their offences, Aw and Lee were directors of Show Wild, an event management company that specialises in IT networking and audio-visual equipment solutions.

Liu was the assistant manager of Essential Werkz, which provides IT solutions for events.

Court documents did not state if Aw, Lee and Liu are still in their respective positions.

Between May 2016 and March 2017, Liu requested quotations from Aw to supply networking solutions for Essential Werkz's IT-related events.

In each instance, Liu would submit Show Wild's quotation to his company's management and tell Aw that Show Wild's services would be engaged for the event.

He would also ask for a commission from Aw as a reward for recommending Show Wild to be the network solutions supplier for Essential Werkz.

Each time, Aw and Lee would discuss Liu's request and agree on the sum to give him.

Liu received $2,400 in total from Aw and Lee.

To cover up the bribes, Aw made false entries in Show Wild's profit and loss statements, accounting for the payments as expenses.

Lee was aware of the false entries as he checked and approved these statements as a director of Show Wild.

The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) said in a statement yesterday that Liu was sentenced in June to a $3,000 fine and a $2,400 penalty.

"Companies are strongly advised to put in place procedures in areas such as procurement and internal audit to reduce the incidence of corruption," said CPIB.

For each corruption offence, Aw and Lee could have each been jailed for up to five years and/or fined up to $100,000.

Each man could also have been jailed for up to 10 years and/or fined for each offence involving the falsification of financial statements.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 06, 2020, with the headline Two men fined over bribes to get contracts. Subscribe