Friday, October 20, 2006

Bribery in Singapore

Former Singapore air freight forwarder Airocean chief Thomas Tay was found guilty of trying to bribe a Jetstar Asia official last April.

According to the prosecution in newspaper reports, Thomas had asked his employee Simon Ang of Airline GSA to offer a form of gratification to Jetstar's head of commercial Chooi Yee-Choong to induce Mr Chooi to assist Airline GSA to secure a cargo-handling contract from Jetstar.

What was the gratification? The so-called gratification was based on, among other things, what Mr Ang said.

When Mr Chooi said he wasn't the main decision-maker for this bidding process, Mr Ang said: 'I fully understand. No obligation. If you can help us, please help us.'

Mr Ang also testified that he said at some point in the conversation: 'My boss said please help us. And if you need help, please call us."

No money or other form of gratification changed hands.

The defence lawyer argued that such an offer was completely proper by today's business standards. 'It is the very basis of networking in Singapore,' he said.

But the deputy public prosecutor argued that it was Tay's motive behind this offer of help that made it improper.

Based on that grey yardstick, many Singapore businessmen should have been thrown in jail. Only the holy civil servants will be left to run the entire island.

1 comment:

hairy maclary said...

great picture. he's bringing his own flask to court! INNOCENT !