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Trio charged for conspiring to fraudulently obtain Work Passes for an F&B business to later supply these workers to another eatery

  1. In the State Courts today, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) charged three Singaporeans - Chia Puay Yeoh (Chia, 53), his wife Tan Chin Hwee (Tan, 48), and Guay Boon Chwee (Guay, 47) – for illegally obtaining work permits for foreigners under the name of one business for the benefit of another business, so that those foreigners could be employed at the latter business. 
  2. Each accused is charged with four counts of conspiring to illegally obtain a work pass for a foreigner for a business that neither required his/her services nor employed the said foreigner, under Section 22B(1) read with Section 23(1) of the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act (EFMA).

    About the Case
  3. Investigations revealed that Guay was the registered director of Hong Kong Street F&B. Sometime around August 2014, Chia obtained Guay’s consent to apply Work Permits for foreigners under Hong Kong Street F&B’s name even though Guay did not require the services of these foreigners. Chia and Guay agreed that the foreigners would work for another business after they have been issued with their work permits.
  4. Investigations also revealed that Tan, acting under Chia’s instruction, allegedly obtained the particulars of four foreigners from the owner of an eatery who wished to employ foreigners for her business but could not meet the requisite conditions to do so. Tan then applied Work Permits for the said four foreigners under Hong Kong Street F&B’s name, when she knew that the foreigners would be working for the said eatery, and not for Hong Kong Street F&B. 
  5. The case has been adjourned to 29 November 2016 in Court 23 at 9.30 am for further mention.

  6. Under the EFMA, it is an offence to obtain work passes for foreign workers for a business with no intention of providing any work for them. If convicted, all three persons face imprisonment for a minimum period of six months or a maximum period of two years, and a fine of up to $6,000 for each offence. If convicted of six or more charges, caning will also be imposed. 
  7. MOM may also impose a permanent ban on the offender from employing foreign workers.

    Advisory to Employers 
  8. MOM reminds all employers that applications for work passes must only be made when there is a genuine need to hire foreign workers for their business. MOM takes a serious view of any fraudulent actions by individuals to undermine the ministry’s work pass controls, and will not hesitate to prosecute such offenders. 
  9. Members of the public who know of persons or employers who contravene the EFMA should report the matter to MOM at Tel: (65) 6438 5122 or email All information will be kept strictly confidential.