CHC trial: Chief Prosecutor says finance manager is being untruthful

CHC trial: Chief Prosecutor says finance manager is being untruthful

You are making excuses, wilfully misinterpreting evidence and being untruthful.

This was what the prosecution told City Harvest Church (CHC) finance manager Sharon Tan yesterday.

Chief Prosecutor Mavis Chionh asserted that Tan was trying to disassociate herself from what had been stated in Tan's past e-mails and statements about the relationship between CHC and Xtron Productions.

Tan, CHC founder Kong Hee and four others are on trial for allegedly misusing more than $50 million of church funds.

Some of this money was allegedly used to fund singer Sun Ho's music career through two companies, music production firm Xtron and glass manufacturer Firna.

Yesterday, the prosecution continued its case that the accused had control of Xtron, rendering it a "shell company".

For example, Ms Chionh presented an e-mail sent by CHC deputy senior pastor and co-accused Tan Ye Peng in December 2008, who wrote about solving the church's budget problems by getting Xtron to charge a lower rental fee.

But Sharon Tan said Tan Ye Peng was merely suggesting ways of helping the church and was not making decisions for Xtron.

She added that negotiations took place between CHC and Xtron after that.

Said Ms Chionh: "He does not say in this message thread, 'Let us try and see what we can negotiate from Xtron.' Yes?

"What you have just told us is not the plain meaning of the words used by Mr Tan (Ye Peng)...and that you are wilfully reinterpreting his words in an inaccurate manner."

Sharon Tan said she disagreed.

Ms Chionh also produced an e-mail sent by Serina Wee, who was Sharon Tan's predecessor as CHC's finance manager, about a new schedule for the drawdown of the Xtron bonds.

"Yes it (is) tentatively. Cos Dr Kong & TYP still working on the projections," Wee had written, after Sharon Tan asked if the new schedule was based on the delay of Ho's English album.

But when Ms Chionh asked if the finalising of the schedule was dependent on Kong and Tan Ye Peng finishing the album projections, Sharon Tan said "no".

Said Ms Chionh: "You are being untruthful in your answer and trying to avoid what is clearly stated in the e-mail itself."

She also pointed out that Sharon Tan had told the Commercial Affairs Department that the Xtron directors were merely "consulted" when it came to the major decisions.

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