Udayavni Special

Two Indian nationals charged with cheating Singaporean companies


PTI, Jul 22, 2021, 2:12 PM IST

Singapore: Two Indian nationals on Thursday were each charged with six counts of ”conspiring to cheat” Singapore-based companies here, according to a media report.

Hussain Naina Mohamed, 46, allegedly duped two companies into paying more than SGD 4 million to two other firms — one of which he was a partner at, The Straits Times reported.

He was also accused of conspiring with the director of a fifth company to trick the victim companies into paying more than SGD 400,000 to it.

Also charged in the cheating case with Hussain was 66-year-old Eldo Thottungal Mathai, a company director.

Both men are Indian nationals and have the ”permanent residents” status in Singapore.

Hussain faces another 20 charges of which 18 are of cheating and two of money laundering, according to the daily.

He was an assistant shipping manager of engineering firm Utracon Structural Systems at the time of the alleged offences between June 24, 2009 and January 2, 2019.

Hussain allegedly concealed that he was the registered partner of Al Rahman Enterprises and Trading, when recommending to Utracon Structural Systems and another related firm, Utracon Overseas, that freight-forwarding and marine insurance jobs be awarded to his company.

He is said to have concealed that his father was the sole proprietor of another company, SM Enterprises, when recommending that Utracon purchase plastic components from it.

His alleged actions resulted in the victim companies paying approximately a total of SGD 4.3 million over the years to Al Rahman and SM Enterprises, according to the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau.

An online search shows that both Al Rahman and SM Enterprises have ceased business operations, according to The Straits Times report.

Hussain and Eldo are also said to have conspired to dupe the victim companies into paying about SGD 417,000 to ship charter company Indus Global Line between October 14, 2011 and April 5, 2018. Eldo was the director of Indus Global Line at that time.

They allegedly concealed that a portion of the price stated in the job quotations submitted by Indus Global Line would be paid to Hussain, if the company was successfully awarded the jobs.

Hussain is accused of remitting about SGD 142,000 of his alleged ill-gotten gains to India between May 2014 and November 2017.

He also purportedly used SGD 125,000 of his alleged criminal proceeds for the purchase of a Housing Board flat (a public housing apartment) on May 22, 2018.

Eldo”s case will be next heard on August 19, while Hussain is expected to plead guilty to his offences on September 16.

For each cheating offence they are convicted of, they can be jailed for up to 10 years and fined.

Hussain can also be jailed for up to seven years, fined up to SGD 500,000, or both, for each offence of money laundering if he is guilty.

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