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Malaysian sentenced to 14 months jail for transporting ill-gotten gains

A Malaysian was sentenced for 14 months jail on Monday (18 December) for handing $216,000 in ill-gotten gains which she was told to transport from Singapore to Johor Baru on five separate occasions in September.

Fong Bee Yeok, 38, pleaded guilty two counts each of receiving monies which were benefits of criminal conduct and removing the cash from Singapore as she received $100 in commission for each transaction, as well as one count of moving out of the country more than $20,000 in cash without giving a full and accurate report to an authorised officer. While, ten other charges for similar offences were taken into consideration during sentencing.

Fong knew about a man, who was only known as Brother, through her boyfriend. Brother was looking for somebody to collect cash from Singapore in exchange for a commission.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Nicholas Lim said, "Although she had never met Brother in person and was not aware of the underlying nature or purpose of the cash, she agreed to carry out this task."

 The Court heard that Brother instructed her to meet one Ms Ong Loke Boey to collect large sums of cash between 10 to 25 September. For example, Fong met Ms Ong at a bus stop near Bugis MRT station and Ms Ong gave her $48,000 in cash on 22 September and took the money across the Causeway later that day.

Two days later,Fong met Ms Ong again and received another $48,000 which she transported to Malaysia.

DPP Lim stated that Fong did not ask Brother about the purpose or source of the money.

He then stressed that she had reasonable grounds to believe the cash Ms Ong gave her was obtained through criminal conduct, saying, "Brother also warned the accused not to meet Ong in an area with CCTV cameras, and the accused suspected that this was because Brother was involved in criminal conduct and did not want the collection of the money to be recorded."

On 4 October, the police received a report from a real estate agent who said that an online persona known only as Kelvin Lee had cheated her into transferring a total of $288,130 into five different bank accounts. However, the court papers did not reveal details about these incidents of cheating.

Fong could have been jailed for up to 10 years and fined up to $500,000 per charge for acquiring the money obtained through criminal behaviour.