Sun Ho's albums would make millions

Sun Ho's albums would make millions
Serina Wee arriving at the courts on Friday, Jul 18.

She is svelte, almost fragile.

But co-accused John Lam sought to paint Serina Wee in a different light yesterday.

It was she who projected Sun Ho's albums would make millions.

And when he wanted details how, it was Wee who did not respond to his doubts.

Lam, 46, and Wee, along with City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee and three other church leaders are accused of misusing more than $50 million of church money through sham bonds. 

Some of this money was allegedly used to fund Ms Ho's music career. She is married to Kong, 49.

In the ongoing trial, Lam said music production firm Xtron - which managed Ms Ho's music career - had projected the singer would be a big hit in the US.

Ms Ho was the face of the megachurch's programme meant to reach out to non-Christians through her secular music albums.

Lam said Xtron had projected she would amass $16 million in 2011 and $23 million the following year through her American album sales.

But Lam, then a CHC board member, said he had his doubts over the company's projected sales.

When he learnt that the release of her album in the US would be delayed in May 2008, he said he wanted to review the value of Xtron. He then received the projected sales figures from fellow accused and former church finance manager Wee, 37, who also provided accounting services to Xtron.

"The big test will be to convince the auditor that we can get album sales of 16 million and 23 million in 2011 and 2012," Lam had written in reply to Wee in a 2008 e-mail, which was read out in court yesterday by his lawyer, Senior Counsel Kenneth Tan.

Lam said he had asked Wee to justify the number of albums that would be sold, the status of the album production and the sales volume as compared to other original artistes at the time.

But he said Wee had replied that "the information... is not ready yet" and there was no further correspondence in the next few days. The album was never released.

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