8 weeks' jail and fine for man in bribery case

8 weeks' jail and fine for man in bribery case
American Mark Edward Tjong, a PR here, is out on bail pending his appeal.

A former business director of the electronics arm of locally listed firm Singapore Technologies Engineering was sentenced to eight weeks' jail yesterday for corruptly receiving $57,387 from a Bangladeshi national.

American citizen Mark Edward Tjong, 48, a permanent resident here, was also ordered to pay a penalty of the same sum: $57,387.

Tjong had received the money through Ms Ho Su-Ling, 38 - his then girlfriend, now wife - from Mr Mujibur Rahman, as a reward for appointing the 65-year-old as an agent for ST Electronics (Info-Software Systems) (STE).

In 2006, when working for STE, Tjong's job scope included sourcing for tenders from South Asia for the company.

He was originally tried on two corruption charges. After an 11-day trial, he was convicted last month of the $57,387 charge but acquitted of a second similar charge involving $30,000.

Tjong is out on $80,000 bail, pending an appeal against the conviction and sentence. His passport has been impounded.

The court heard that in March 2006, an agency agreement between STE and Mr Mujibur, the boss of Kings Shipping and Trading, which was handling Bangladeshi government projects, was signed.

He then clinched a contract from his government for STE to supply and equip Bangladeshi police with walkie-talkies and a telecommunications network.

STE gave a cheque of $185,425 as agent fee to Mr Mujibur, who then opened a personal Citibank checking account in Singapore.

Ten days after Mr Mujibur returned to Dhaka, Tjong flew there on a business trip. Mr Mujibur met him at a hotel and handed over two blank Citibank cheques.

The amounts were later filled in by Tjong, who deposited the cheques into the bank account of Ms Ho. The funds were later withdrawn.

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