Singapore lawyer allegedly linked to missing S$33m case faces 4 new charges

Jeffrey Ong managing partner of the law firm JLC Advisors charged in court for charges of forgery and criminal breach of trust

Money laundering
lawyer jailed for misappropriating money (Representational picture) Pixabay

The lawyer and managing partner of the law firm JLC Advisors, who vanished in May along with more than $33 million of the firm's money were slapped with four new charges on Monday.

The 42-year-old Jeffrey Ong was charged with three more counts of forgery for the purpose of cheating and one count of criminal breach of trust as an attorney.

He appeared in the district court via video-link sporting a shaved head. Ong is currently facing a total of 26 charges, mostly for forgery and cheating.

Reports claimed that while working as a lawyer at the first he allegedly misappropriated over US$4.85 million (about $6.65 million) on Oct 23, 2017.

Ong, who is currently in remand, believed to have committed three offences related to forgery and criminal breach of trust on August 7, 2018.

His case is adjourned till November 25. But during Monday's hearing, the Deputy Public Prosecutor Nicholas Khoo said that Ong may face more charges later.

As per the Singapore Penal Code, "Whoever, being in any manner entrusted with property, or with any dominion over property, in his capacity of a public servant, or in the way of his business as a banker, a merchant, a factor, a broker, an attorney or an agent, commits criminal breach of trust in respect of that property, shall be punished with imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 20 years, and shall also be liable to fine."

It should be mentioned that Ong was first appeared in court on June 1 and charged for cheating a company called Suite Development. Court documents revealed that he allegedly committed the offence against another company CCJ Investments, which was manipulated and forced to believe that Suite Development had entered into a loan agreement with it.

The court documents stated that on February 18 and 19 the accused had forged the signature of two individuals, James Tan Kwang Yong, the director and sole shareholder of Suite Development as well as Joel Tan Guang Qian, the secretary of Suite Development, to sign eight documents.

These documents include director and shareholder resolutions, an instrument of transfer and a contract between the Suite Development director and CCJ Investments. The documents also include a mortgage relating to three properties in Tanjong Katong.

It was revealed that about $3.3 million was used to refinance Suite Development's mortgage loan while $2.7 million have been deposited into the client account of Ong's law firm.

Ong was arrested from a Kuala Lumpur hotel with the help of Royal Malaysia Police. He was brought back to Singapore on May 30. During the court hearing, he appeared via video link.

Related topics : Singapore crime