The human resource (HR) manager at a subsidiary of embattled water treatment firm Hyflux with corruption on Wednesday (June 3).
Khoo Chen Ee, 36, a manager in Hydrochem (S), is accused of receiving or agreeing to receive about S$7,000 in “rewards” on three occasions between August and December two years ago from Elumalai Selvakumar, the director of Leeds HR Solution.
The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB), however, did not disclose whether Mr Elumalai is facing any corruption charge.
Mr Khoo, who is a permanent resident, told the court today that he intends to plead guilty to the charge. He will be back in court on 26 June.
If found guilty, Mr Khoo may be subject to a fine of S$100,000, a jail term of up to five years, or both.
Hydrochem, the predecessor of Hyflux, was established by Hyflux founder Olivia Lum in 1989. It became Hyflux’s wholly-owned subsidiary upon the parent company’s incorporation in 2000.
CAD, MAS, ACRA launch joint investigation into Hyflux’s current and former directors for breach of disclosure and non-compliance accounting standards
The Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) of the Singapore Police Force, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) have launched a joint investigation into Hyflux and its current and former directors for suspected false and misleading statements, breach of disclosure requirements, as well as non-compliance with accounting standards.
The authorities said on Tuesday (2 June) that the investigation was launched after a review of Hyflux-related disclosure and compliance with accounting and auditing standards that was announced in April last year, upon which they discovered reasons to suspect that offences may have been committed.
According to the authorities, the review was an extensive exercise covering the announcements and financial statements issued by Hyflux over a period of eight years, between 2011 and 2018 inclusive.
“The investigation will ascertain whether there were lapses in Hyflux’s disclosures concerning the Tuaspring Integrated Water and Power Project (Tuaspring IWPP), as well as non-compliance with accounting standards between 2011 and 2018,” the authorities said in their statement.
As part of their investigation, the authorities stated that they have obtained accounting and other corporate records from Hyflux and its subsidiary Tuaspring, adding that Hyflux’s directors and key officers involved in Tuaspring IWPP have also been interviewed.
Speaking on the time needed for the full investigation, the authorities noted that an update will be provided when there is an outcome, given that the time needed to complete the investigation is subject to several factors including offence period and complexity of issues.
They added that they do not intend to interfere Hyflux’s current reorganisation plans with the criminal investigation.
“The investigations are not intended to interfere with Hyflux’s current reorganisation plans as they focus on determining the role of the subjects in the alleged disclosure lapses and non-compliance with accounting standards between 2011 and 2018.”
Responding to this issue, Hyflux in a bourse filing on Tuesday, stated that the authorities have sent a notice to the company, requesting it to provide certain information and documents relating to the Tuaspring desalination plant.
Hyflux noted that it will make further announcements as and when there are any updates, adding that the company is “presently assisting and will cooperate fully with CAD in its investigations”.
It is believed that those who served as board of directors during the period between 2011 and 2018, including Ms Lum, will be under investigation.