Director of Employment Agency Convicted and Sentenced to 11 Months' Jail for Making False Declarations in Work Permit Applications
Chiang Zhi Wei (“Chiang”), a 35-year-old director of employment agency J&Y Recruit Pte Ltd (“J&Y Recruit”), was convicted for making false declarations in work permit applications for migrant workers. He was sentenced to a cumulative term of 11 months’ imprisonment under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act (EFMA). Following the conviction, Chiang has been permanently debarred from re-entering the employment agency industry. The employment agency licence of J&Y Recruit was suspended during investigations and was not renewed upon its expiry.
2 From April to July 2019, J&Y Recruit submitted 192 work permit applications for migrant workers to be employed by 6 companies that were unaware of the applications made on their behalf and had no intention to employ the workers. Chiang had intended to secure the workers a work permit before any other employment agency, so that he could then deploy the workers to his clients.
3 For every successful in-principle approval (IPA) issued by MOM, Chiang received fees from the overseas agents that oversaw the workers’ applications. Chiang received $50 per successful application, and in total, received $2,000 from these agents.
4 Eventually, none of the workers entered Singapore, as all 192 work permit applications were either rejected or cancelled by the 6 companies when they found out, or were revoked by MOM.
Advisory to Employment Agencies and Employers
5 All employment agencies and employers must make accurate, complete and truthful declarations to the Controller in their work pass applications. A person who makes a declaration that was false in a work pass application, and either knew or ought to know it was false, commits an offence under the EFMA. If convicted, an offender can be fined up to $20,000, or jailed for up to two years, or both.