The mental state of a wealthy widow who handed control of her assets worth $40 million to a former tour guide will be assessed by an independent medical expert.
Based on the report, the court will decide whether 87-year-old Chung Khin Chun can take back control of her assets by revoking the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) that she gave Chinese national Yang Yin in 2012, four years after meeting him.
The decision to appoint a medical expert was made by the Family Court yesterday, at the request of the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG), after a two-hour closed door hearing.
This was disclosed to reporters by Mr Peter Doraisamy, lawyer for Madam Chung's niece, Madam Hedy Mok, after the hearing.
The OPG, which runs the LPA scheme, will try its best to have the Institute of Mental Health expert submit the assessment before the next hearing on Oct 17.
This was according to Attorney-General's Chambers deputy chief counsel Hui Choon Kuen, who represented the OPG during the hearing.
The saga began after Madam Mok found out about the 2012 LPA earlier this year. Worried that Mr Yang, 40, may have manipulated her aunt, Madam Mok took Madam Chung away from his care.
She also started a series of legal proceedings which included suing Mr Yang and his wife, Madam Weng Yandan, 34, for allegedly breaching their duties in caring for Madam Chung.
Mr Yang is also under police investigation after reports emerged on how he had boasted about his wealth two months after Madam Chung gave him the LPA.
The former tour guide, however, said that Madam Chung wanted him as a "grandson".
He moved into her $30 million Gerald Crescent bungalow in 2009, a year after acting as her personal guide on a trip to Beijing.
With the help of the widow, he set up a music and dance school and obtained an Employment Pass in 2009. He became a Singapore permanent resident in 2011. Last year, his wife and two young children moved into the bungalow. They were evicted by Madam Mok early last month.
Since then, Mr Yang has come under probe by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority and the Ministry of Manpower.
At a press conference two weeks ago, a lawyer appointed by Madam Mok to act on behalf of her aunt announced that the widow had applied to the OPG to revoke the LPA.
The OPG then applied to the court to ask for an independent assessment of Madam Chung's mental state. Last week, the court decided to temporarily suspend Mr Yang's powers under the LPA.
This article was first published on Oct 11, 2014.
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