Desperate for a job after his hair salon folded in 2004, Yeo Cheng San bought fake degrees in human resource management from the Florida International University through the Internet for about $8,000.
These included a Bachelor's degree, a Master's degree and a Post Graduate Diploma which he used in his curriculum vitae to secure jobs with three firms where he would earn between $9,000 and $12,800 a month.
He also forged a testimonial purportedly from a past employer. A district court on Thursday jailed Yeo, 34, for a year.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Nicholas Ngoh said that Yeo, who only had O levels qualifications, was appointed human resource director at the Eminent Group, then a human resource manager at Innovalues and finally a human resource and administrative manager at Gain City Best-Electric. He also forged a testimonial attesting his good character and excellent performance and signed it as the chief operating officer of Eminent Group to get the job at Gain City.
In 1999, he had been jailed for 15 months for cheating and theft. Pleading for a lenient sentence, defence counsel T. U. Naidu said that upon Yeo's release from prison found it difficult to get a good job. As the eldest child, he felt he had to shoulder the responsibility of taking care of his elderly parents and younger siblings, the lawyer added.
Yeo will start serving sentence on Feb 19 as his younger sister had been involved in a traffic accident and is recovering in hospital