A former money changer convicted of two charges of misappropriating about $4 million entrusted by two customers was sentenced to six years' jail yesterday.
Fazal Mohamed N.M.A.R Mohamed Ebrahim, 52, was also fined $10,000 for carrying on a moneychanging business from March 2011 without a valid licence.
But he is appealing against the conviction and sentence. Fazal was convicted last Thursday of dishonestly misappropriating $3.7 million given by sales director Ng Hwee Boon, 50, and $269,483 by Ms Ng's friend, Ms Angeline Ong Hsiao Wei, 41, an account manager, in 2011.
Despite losing his money- changing business after the death of his father, a partner in Bismi Cosmetics Centre, Fazal, who was a partner, continued with the trade at The Arcade in Collyer Quay.
Ms Ng, who made a total of 21 investments, had testified she went to Fazal's shop in July 2010 to inquire about the pound which she was keen to invest in. But she agreed to buy euros instead after she was promised a return of 2.8 per cent on the investment sum, payable at the end of two weeks. Two weeks later, she collected her initial invested sum in Singapore dollars as well as the promised 2.8 per cent of the invested amount.
Over time, she invested more and more money with Fazal, who issued her an invoice for each investment. Upon maturity, Ms Ng would either withdraw a part of the returns and re-invest the rest of the money or re-invest the entire sum. Ms Ng introduced Fazal to Ms Ong who invested $100,000 in September 2010 and injected another $353,000 the following month.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Jasmin Kaur said the nett losses suffered by Ms Ng and Ms Ong were $2.5 million and $123,000 respectively. Urging the court to pass consecutive sentences on the criminal breach of trust charges, she said Fazal intentionally deceived the victims, and the offences involved a high degree of pre-meditation and planning.
This article was first published on August 15, 2014.
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