Director of errant licensed money-lending company fined $63,000

SINGAPORE - Koh Poh Huat, 41, a director of moneylending company Credit @ Vincent Koh Pte Ltd, was fined $63,000 in court today for 10 money-lending related offences. He will have to serve 17 weeks' and eight days imprisonment if he defaults on the fine.

He was charged in court on March 24 by the Registry of Moneylenders, a division of the Insolvency and Public Trustee's Office.

The company's money-lending licence issued on Dec 16, 2009 was revoked on July 30, 2010 after Koh was found to have furnished the Registry with materially false information during his application for the licence. He also underwent investigation for possible offences under the Moneylenders Act.

Koh pleaded guilty in court today and was convicted for the following 10 offences out of 30 charges:

- One charge for failure to supply a statement of account to borrower within 21 days after June 30, 2010.

- One charge for failure to obtain on the licensee's copy of the receipt a signature of the borrower acknowledging that he has received the said receipt.

- Three charges for knowingly furnishing false information to the Registrar.

- Four charges for granting an unsecured loan exceeding the prescribed limit of $3,000 to a Singapore borrower with an annual income below $20,000.

- One charge for granting an unsecured loan to a Singaporen borrower with an annual income between $30,000 and $120,000, thereby causing the outstanding loan amount to exceed the prescribed limit of four months of the borrower's income.

Anyone found guilty of breaching the Moneylenders Act and Rules will face a fine of up to $40,000 and/or an imprisonment term of up to two years on each charge.