On 9 November 2022, Xu Shaowen (“Xu”), a 33-year-old Singaporean male, was convicted of cheating and falsification offences involving the Professional Conversion Programmes (“PCP”) offered by Workforce Singapore (“WSG”) and administered by the Singapore National Employers Federation (“SNEF”), a programme partner appointed by WSG.
PCPs helped mid-career professionals, managers, executives and technicians undergo skills conversion and move into new occupations or sectors with opportunities for progression.
The grant pay-outs included course fee subsidies and a salary support grant which was computed based on the employee’s monthly salary.
At the material time, Xu was a general manager and shareholder of 7W Consultancy Pte Ltd (“7W Consultancy”).
Xu pleaded guilty to conspiring with a director and shareholder of 7W Consultancy, in December 2017, to submit for himself a fraudulent application to SNEF for funding under the PCP. Xu falsely declared in his PCP application form that his gross monthly salary from 7W Consultancy was $5,800, and thereby deceived SNEF into disbursing the PCP funding amounting to $13,995. Full restitution has since been made to WSG.
In April 2018, Xu submitted another fraudulent application to SNEF for PCP funding for an employee of 7W Consultancy. At the material time, the employee was an information technology manager and a shareholder of 7W Consultancy. Xu falsely declared in the PCP application form that the employee was employed by 7W Consultancy as a deputy human resource manager and that his gross monthly salary was $5,600. Xu then falsified an employment contract to support the fraudulent PCP application. The said employment contract was submitted to SNEF. No disbursement was made by SNEF for this application as the application was subsequently withdrawn.
For his involvement in these offences, Xu has been convicted on one count of abetment by conspiracy to cheat under Section 417 read with Section 109 of the Penal Code, and one count of falsification of accounts under Section 477A of the Penal Code, and sentenced to 13 weeks’ imprisonment. Three other charges have been taken into consideration for the purpose of sentencing.