SINGAPORE: Su Haijin, a key suspect involved in the S$2.8 billion money laundering case, has requested the return of his “clean” assets from the police through his lawyer.
On Wednesday (11 Oct), Su’s case underwent a pre-trial conference under the oversight of District Judge Ng Cheng Thiam. This conference was held behind closed doors, with no access granted to media reporters.
The defense has explicitly urged the police to return Su’s “clean” assets.
The presiding judge also indicated that if there are any accounts or assets found to be untainted, the prosecution should consider releasing them.
“As the defence counsel has written to the Commercial Affairs Department and made no application to this court, this court shall leave it as it is for the CAD and the prosecution to reply to the defence counsel.”
Official court records reveal that if the police do not conclude their investigation within eight weeks, the prosecution is prepared to press charges against Su Haijin for the two offences he currently faces.
The judge further emphasized that the prosecution should consider releasing the documents and analyzed devices to the defence. Any devices still undergoing analysis will remain in their current status.
The case is scheduled for its second pre-trial conference on December 8th, and Su Haijin will not be eligible for bail until that date.
Su Haijin’s money laundering schemes and global property portfolio
Su, originally from Fujian, China but now a Cypriot national, is charged with unlawfully evading arrest and a money-laundering offence involving approximately S$4 million held in a UOB bank account, which is allegedly the proceeds of criminal activity.
It was reported last month that the total value of assets seized from Su and his wife had increased to over S$170 million.
This includes S$2.1 million in cash, S$46.5 million in bank accounts, S$120 million in properties, and S$2.6 million worth of vehicles.
Su also possesses significant wealth overseas, including ownership of a condominium in Cambodia, three condominiums in Cyprus, one property along Oxford Street, five condominiums in Macau, and partial ownership of a yacht named “Family.”
Previously, it had been disclosed that Su Haijin and his brother, Su Baolin had close financial dealings related to two Beach Road properties valued at S$2.2 million in Su Haijin’s name.
They were also involved in the acquisition of the yacht alongside three other individuals.
The involvement of Su in the overseas property transactions was initially reported by Radio Free Asia, an American media company, and the investigative reporting platform Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project.
Meanwhile, Su’s wife and four children are reportedly relocating from their rented good-class bungalow in Bukit Timah to Gramercy Park, a condominium in the Orchard Road area.
In a last month court proceeding, Deputy Public Prosecutor Eric Hu stressed that Su Haijin’s extensive wealth abroad and possession of multiple passports were clear signs of his being an “extremely high flight risk.”
Su Haijin made Singapore home since 2017
It was uncovered that Su Haijin possesses passports from Cambodia and Turkey that the police did not recover, as cited in the investigating officer’s affidavit presented in court, which also revealed the presence of a Saint Lucian passport under the name Su Junjie on the accused’s phone.
District Judge Brenda Tan pointed out that the circumstances surrounding Su Haijin’s arrest strongly indicated his propensity to flee.
Julian Tay of Lee & Lee, representing Su Haijin, contended that his client’s wealth outside Singapore constituted only a small fraction, approximately 10%, of the assets seized in Singapore.
“My client has strong personal and financial connections to Singapore and he has made Singapore his home since 2017, ” said Mr Tay.
He further noted that Su’s immediate family, including his wife, four children, and parents, also reside in Singapore.
Tay argued that his client had no intention of abandoning his family to become a fugitive.
Exploring the multifaceted business portfolio and lavish lifestyle of Su Haijin
Su Haijin was reportedly a shareholder or director in multiple companies and had purportedly received S$36.37 million for a pair of adjacent bungalows in Sentosa Cove.
He held this directorial position at the company from October 2021 to June 2022, as indicated in info available on the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (Acra).
The company’s annual report for the year 2021, submitted in October of that year, documented Su Haijin as possessing a 20 percent ownership stake in the company, As reported by The Straits Times.
Su Haijin also held positions as both a shareholder and director at Aiqinhai Investment, a privately held company limited by shares, and maintained identical roles at Daily Glory International, a mobile phone dealership.
Furthermore, according to a report from Chinese media outlet Lianhe Zaobao, it was revealed that Su Haijin holds positions as both a shareholder and director at Yihao Cyber Technologies Pte. Ltd.
Additionally, he is a shareholder in Meining (Asia) International Electronic Commerce Pte. Ltd. and Sg-Gree, an electrical appliance manufacturer specializing in air-conditioners.
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