Four witnesses take stand today at Chee Wen’s committal hearing

SINGAPOR: Four more witnesses are expected to be called on the last day today of the three-day committal hearing involving Malaysian businessman Soh Chee Wen before the Singapore High Court decides if there is a basis for a full trial.

Assistant Registrar James Elisha Lee Han Leong is expected to make the decision later today.

The witness list sighted by Bernama comprised the names of a trader called Ken Tai, Jason Moo of Goldman Sachs, Gao Shihui Ester of Government Technology, and Sheryl Tan of the Commercial Affairs Department.

In total, only 13 witnesses will be cross-examined from a total 67, nine of whom had gone through detailed questioning on the first two days of the hearing which began on Wednesday.

Among the witnesses called on Thursday were two brokers who have a global trading limit of S$65 million (RM193 million) and a “few hundred million”, respectively, with thousands of clients under their care.

Soh, who has been on remand since the end of 2016 for a commercial crime, has to answer 189 charges, including eight new charges of witness tampering which he faced in February last year.

As to the rest of the 181 charges, he allegedly violated the Securities and Futures Act.

Soh’s charges are in relation to the collapse of the share prices of Asiasons Capital Ltd, Blumont Group Ltd and LionGold Corp in October 2013, which then spirally affected most penny stocks in the Singapore Exchange.

He is represented by N. Sreenivasan, S. Balamurugan and Jason Lim of Straits Law Practice, while the public prosecutors are Peter Koy, Teo Guan Siew and Lynn Tan.

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Joining Soh in the court are IPCO International chief executive officer Quah Su Ling and former IPCO interim CEO Goh Hin Calm, who are both alleged to have manipulated the three penny stocks.

Soh has been denied bail, Quah, who faces 178 charges, is out on bail of S$4 million, while Goh, who faces six charges, is on bail of S$750,000 (RM2.2 million).

The crash over three trading days in October 2013 cleared up S$8 billion (RM8 billion) in shareholder value from the Singapore Exchange. — Bernama


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