Friday, September 07, 2012

Former ICA staff jailed, fined for corruption

SINGAPORE: A former analyst with the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) was sentenced to two months' imprisonment and fined $9,000 for corruption and unauthorised use of computer data.

Ng Chun Wei, 35, was also made to pay a penalty of $700 for accepting the bribe.

Ng, who was with the ICA's Border Watch Unit, had accepted $500 to facilitate citizen applications, as well as for performing unauthorised computer searches on the status of those applications.

His accomplice, part-time musician Tan Poh Guan, 54, was sentenced to two-and-a-half months' jail for abetting the crime, as well as for giving false information to an investigation officer when questioned about the case.

The court heard that Tan had linked Ng up with a Mr Mohamed Saif Mohamed Salleh who needed help with the citizenship applications for his two children.

Mr Mohamed Saif was married to a Filipino national, and had already failed in getting the citizenship applications approved on his first attempt.

Tan told Ng that Mr Mohamed Saif would be willing to pay a fee in return for the latter's help.

The trio then met at a coffeeshop in Chinatown Point sometime in November 2010, where Ng told Mr Mohamed Saif that he would facilitate the applications for a $1,500 fee.

Ng added that there was a 70 to 80 per cent chance that the applications would be successful and that he would return the money if they were not.

Mr Mohamed Saif then handed over $500 as an initial payment, and agreed to pay the remaining $1,000 once the applications had been approved.

Ng then accompanied Mr Mohamed Saif to the ICA building on two occasions to make the applications.

Investigations revealed that Ng later accessed the ICA's computer system three times in December 2010 to check on the status of the applications, even though he did not have the authority to do so.

Before his posting to the Border Watch Unit, Ng had been attached to the Citizen Service Centre - the department which processes applications for Singapore citizenship.

In meting out Ng's sentence, District Judge Eugene Teo said that while Ng was a first-time offender, he had abused his position. He urged Ng to make good on his promise not to re-offend after serving his sentence.

View the original article here

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