Prosecution in CHC case: Documents created after event

Prosecution in CHC case: Documents created after event

SINGAPORE - It was 2008 and Serina Wee no longer held any official position in City Harvest Church (CHC).

Nor was she involved with Firna, a glassware manufacturing company based in Indonesia.

But behind the scenes, she was still pulling the strings for a deal between the megachurch and Firna, the prosecution insisted.

Prosecutors showed an e-mail by Wee to prove their assertion yesterday in the trial of the six CHC leaders.

Wee, CHC founder Kong Hee, and four others, are accused of misusing more than $50 million of church money through sham bonds.

Some of this money was allegedly used to fund the music career of Ms Sun Ho, who is married to Kong, 49, through two companies - music production firm Xtron and glass manufacturer Firna.

And the person managing the funds that would be channelled to CHC's Crossover Project was Wee.

This was suggested by Chief Prosecutor Mavis Chionh to former CHC board member John Lam, who was into his eighth day on the witness stand.

Lam, 46, is the first accused to take the stand.

The Crossover Project, fronted by Ms Ho, was meant to evangelise to non-converts through secular pop music.

In an e-mail dated September 2008, Wee had written: "Time is tight for Firna bonds.

"So no choice later on then cancel the convertible part."

After reading out the e-mail, Ms Chionh asked Lam why Wee, 37, who was not part of CHC or Firna, was giving instructions about the drawdowns of the Firna bond. CHC had invested $11 million of building fund monies in Firna.

Said Ms Chionh: "You didn't find it necessary to question Serina (Wee) on the role she was playing in the Firna bond drawdowns even though you admit you didn't understand.

"(It) was because you actually knew very well that she is the person administering the Crossover Project."

Lam replied: "I don't know."

Ms Chionh also pointed out that Wee had access to a document that Lam claimed was reviewed during a CHC Investment Committee (IC) meeting on Aug 5, 2008.

Lam had confirmed Wee was not part of the IC, and was not at that meeting.

Yet Wee was the one who created the document, which was a spreadsheet showing Xtron's finances, on Aug 8, 2008.

This was three days after the supposed committee meeting, said Ms Chionh. The spreadsheet was then sent to co-accused Sharon Tan.

Said Ms Chionh: "Your claim that the document... was given to the IC on Aug 5 is untrue because this documentary evidence shows clearly that the document was created on Aug 8."

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