On Monday, (24 February), Jeffrey Ong Su An, a lawyer and managing partner of law firm JLC Advisors, is being prosecuted of another 12 charges for embezzling S$33.8 million between October 2017 and August 2018. According to the charge sheets, the embezzling amount were in sums between S$10,000 to S$12.2 million.
Since Monday’s hearing, Mr Ong currently faces 38 charges ranging from cheating, forgery and criminal breach of trust.
The 42-year-old managing director at JLC Advisors, was accused of breaching in trust by misappropriating sums, while the money was entrusted to him in his capacity as a solicitor at JLC Advisors.
The embezzled sum was said to be owned by an engineering firm called Allied Technologies and the sum was being held in escrow. Mr Ong is also facing one charge of forging the signature of a senior partner at his firm on a cheque in April 2019.
He is being defended by lawyer Jennifer Sia from NLC Law Asia.
Meanwhile, as the Commercial Affairs Department is still conducting investigations “and trying to finalize everything”, the prosecution team has asked for six weeks adjournment. To this, the judge granted an adjournment to 7 April, this year.
Previously, Allied Tech filed a police report over an unauthorized pay out of S$33 million from its escrow account.
In June 2019, after he appeared in court, it was revealed in court that Mr Ong had left Singapore on 13 May, which was 10 days prior to when a Singapore Exchange filing was made by Allied Technology.
Mr Ong had obtained a stolen Malaysian passport, and disposed his mobile phone while purchasing a new phone with a Chinese SIM card to flee the country.
Prosecutors also revealed that he received help from a friend to bring him to Malaysia and had made prior arrangements for Mr Ong to stay in an office and a hotel room for which he did not pay for using credit cards
He was finally arrested with the help of the Royal Malaysia Police and was apprehended in a hotel in Kuala Lumpur.
An officer from the Commercial Affairs Department disclosed that Mr Ong had only confided in his wife of his plans.
Following the filing between Singapore Exchange and Allied Tech, the Singapore Law Society issued a notice of intervention into JLC’s client accounts and later took over control of funds held by JLC.
If found guilty, Mr Ong faces a jail term of up to 20 years, including a fine for each charge of breaching the trust while as an attorney.