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Thursday, August 18, 2022
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DIRECTOR OF SUSPECTED SHELL COMPANIES CHARGED WITH OFFENCES UNDER THE COMPANIES ACT AND CORRUPTION

On 4 July 2022, Susila Hyrawatty Binte Hashim (“Susila”), a 43-year-old woman, was charged with two counts of offences under Section 157(1) punishable under Section 157(3)(b) of the Companies Act (Cap 50, 2006 Rev Ed) (“Companies Act”) for allegedly failing to exercise reasonable diligence in the discharge of her duties as a director of two Singapore companies.

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Susila was also charged for one count of possessing funds in her company’s bank account, which were reasonably suspected of being another person’s benefits from criminal conduct, which she had failed to account satisfactorily how she came by the same, under Section 47AA(1) of the Corruption, Drug Trafficking and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation of Benefits) Act, Chapter 65A (“CDSA”).

Investigations revealed that Susila purportedly incorporated two Singapore companies Noxt Lightings Pte Ltd (“Noxt”) and Aubright Lightings Pte Ltd (“Aubright”) at the behest of an unidentified person, who is believed to have engaged in criminal conduct, and to have accessed the companies’ bank accounts to launder proceeds of crime.

In consequence of Susila’s failure to exercise reasonable diligence in the discharge of her duties as Aubright’s sole director, Aubright received a sum of USD 265,720 in its bank account on 30 September 2021, which may be reasonably suspected of being another person’s benefits from criminal conduct, and for which she failed to account satisfactorily how she came by the same.

The offence under Section 157(1) punishable under Section 157(3)(b) of the Companies Act carries a fine of up to $5,000 or imprisonment of up to 12 months. Under Section 154(2)(a) read with Section 154(4)(a) of the Companies Act, offenders may also be fined and disqualified from acting as a director for up to five years.

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The offence under Section 47AA(1) punishable under Section 47AA(2)(a) of CDSA carries a fine of up to $150,000 or imprisonment of up to three years, or both.

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