ICA officer jailed for graft

ICA officer jailed for graft
Mohammed Mustaffa Mohabat Ali, an officer with the Immigration & Checkpoint Authority (ICA) was charged with corruption for granting Visit Passes (VPs) to foreigners in exchange for money. He faces 35 charges under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

SINGAPORE- An immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) staff member who gave and accepted bribes to help foreigners prolong their stay in Singapore was jailed for 21 months yesterday.

Mohammed Mustaffa Mohabat Ali, 29, was also ordered to pay a penalty of $8,050.

He admitted to eight charges of corruptly accepting bribes as rewards for granting 30-day social visit passes to various foreigners.

He also admitted four charges of corruptly giving bribes to four colleagues to do the same. Twenty-three other charges were considered during his sentencing.

Mustaffa was attached to Tuas Checkpoint as a primary screening officer whose duties included assessing whether foreigners met entry requirements, inspecting passports and granting visit passes.

Investigation showed that between October 2010 and June 2011, he accepted bribes in return for granting visit passes to Filipino and Vietnamese women.

He worked mainly with Philibert Tng Hai Swee, who referred the foreigners to him.

Tng would provide transportation for the foreigners, drive them through the checkpoint and seek out Mustaffa to grant the visit passes when he was on duty at the checkpoint.

Mustaffa charged between $250 and $500 for every extension. Tng would collect the money from the foreigners and keep $50 per foreigner for himself as a referral fee.

Investigations showed that 33 foreigners were involved in Mustaffa's scheme.

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