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Five Men Charged For Their Alleged Involvement In Fraudulent Investment Schemes

Between 12 April 2024 and 15 April 2024, five men were charged in court with offences under the Penal Code (“PC”), the Companies Act (“CA”) and the Securities and Futures Act (“SFA”) in relation to their alleged involvement in investment schemes offered by Bill’s Finanze Corporation Pte Ltd (“BFC”) and/or an investment scheme purportedly offered by Smartfunding Pte Ltd (“SF”).

A 52-year-old man, Osman Bin Japar, the Chief Trader of BFC and a beneficial shareholder of SF at the material time, faces the following charges:

  1. One count of fraudulent trading under Section 340(5) of the CA in relation to carrying on the business of BFC;

  2. Two counts of criminal breach of trust under Section 406 of the PC for misappropriating a total sum of $1,172,437 from the investment scheme purportedly offered by SF; and 
     
  3. Two amalgamated charges of consenting to BFC making offers of securities without prospectus under Section 240(1) read with Section 331(1) of the SFA, read with section 124(4) of the Criminal Procedure Code 2010 (“CPC”).

A 29-year-old man, Muhammad Nabil Fatin Bin Osman,the Chief Executive Officer of BFC at the material time, faces the following charges: 

  1. One count of fraudulent trading under Section 340(5) of the CA in relation to carrying on the business of BFC;

  2. One count of cheating under Section 420 of the PC for dishonestly inducing one of BFC’s investors to transfer funds to his bank account instead of BFC; and

  3. Two amalgamated charges of consenting to BFC making offers of securities without prospectus under Section 240(1) read with Section 331(1) of the SFA, read with section 124(4) of the CPC.

The remaining three men, aged between 38 and 61, were registered directors of BFC at the material time. One faces two amalgamated charges of consenting to BFC making offers of securities without prospectus under Section 240(1) read with Section 331(1) of the SFA, read with section 124(4) of the CPC. The other two each face one count of Section 157(1) of the CA for failing to use reasonable diligence in the discharge of their duties as directors of BFC.

Background

Between March 2018 and May 2019, BFC offered two investment schemes, purportedly to invest in local Small and Medium Enterprises. The schemes promised to repay the investors their investment with returns of 45% and 104% over a six and 12-month period respectively. BFC is suspected of using the investments to repay the investment and the promised returns of earlier investors and to fund trading activities on an overseas online trading platform. BFC is also suspected of failing to lodge or register any prospectus with the Monetary Authority of Singapore and making the offers of the two investment schemes to the investors without the requisite prospectus, which is an offence under Section 240 of the SFA.

Between May 2019 and September 2019, SF purportedly offered an investment scheme to invest in two companies, A&A Logistics and Movers Pte Ltd and DJ Automobile SG Pte Ltd. However, $1,172,437 from money raised from investors was allegedly dishonestly misappropriated, without the knowledge of the investors.  

Those found guilty of an offence under Section 340(5) of the CA shall be liable to a fine of up to $15,000 or to imprisonment for a term of up to seven years, or to both. Company directors who are convicted of failing to exercise reasonable diligence in the discharge of the duties of his office under Section 157(1) of the CA shall be liable to a fine of up to $5,000 or to imprisonment for a term of up to 12 months.

Those found guilty of criminal breach of trust under Section 406 of the PC and cheating under Section 420 of the PC shall be liable to imprisonment for a term of up to seven and 10 years respectively and/or to a fine, for each charge.

Those found guilty of making offers of securities without prospectus under Section 240(1) read with Section 331(1) of the SFA shall be liable to a fine of up to $150,000 or to imprisonment for a term of up to two years, or to both. A person convicted of an amalgamated charge under Section 240(1) read with Section 331(1) of the SFA read with Section 124(4) of the CPC shall be liable to two times the amount of punishment to which that person would otherwise have been liable for one incident of the offence.

 


PUBLIC AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT
SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE
15 April 2024 @ 7:45 PM
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