The director of a wholesale trade company and a sales executive of a department store at Dunlop Street were fined for giving and receiving gratification under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Mohamed Malik Seeni Syed, a director of wholesale trade company Via Star (S) Pte Ltd, and Arunachalam Arunraj, both Indian nationals, a sales executive of department store Appollo Sellappas Pte Ltd, were each sentenced to a fine of $5,000 for the offences.
Arunraj was also ordered to pay an additional penalty of $2,600 under section 13 of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) said in a press release on Tuesday (19 March) that its investigations revealed that at the material time of the offences, Malik, 34, was in the business of supplying watches to department store Appollo through Via Star Pte Ltd for retail sales purposes.
Arunraj, 28, was the main employee selling watches at the watch department of Appollo and was also tasked with alerting the inventory department when watch stocks were low, which would cause more watches to be ordered.
Sometime in October 2016, Malik and Arunraj reached an agreement where Malik would give Arunraj monetary rewards in return for Arunraj pushing for the sales of Via Star watches, and increasing the number of watch orders from Via Star as a result.
Subsequently, Malik gave Arunraj a total of $2,600 in cash over four occasions in October 2016, January 2017, April 2017 and September 2017 ($300, $900, $500 and $900 respectively). These actions constituted offences punishable under the Prevention of Corruption Act, Chapter 241.
On 26 February 2019, Malik was charged with four counts of corruptly giving gratification totalling $2,600 to Arunraj as inducements to advance the business interest of Via Star with Appollo, while Arunraj was correspondingly charged with four counts of corruptly accepting gratification from Malik.
The bureau stressed that Singapore adopts a strict zero-tolerance approach towards corruption, saying that it is a serious offence to give or accept bribes from another individual or entity.
Any person who is convicted of a corruption offence can be fined up to $100,000 or sentenced to imprisonment of up to 5 years or to both.