SINGAPORE: A woman who was “blinded by love” helped her student care centre boss cheat the Government of student fee subsidies, and lied to help him obtain financial assistance for his mother.
Daljit Kaur Yinder Singh, 50, was jailed for four months on Wednesday (Oct 14) for her crimes.
She pleaded guilty to three charges of making false entries with intent to defraud the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), engaging in a conspiracy to give false information to MSF, and abetting her co-accused to cheat MSF. Another two charges were taken into consideration.
The court heard that Daljit was a centre supervisor at Welcare Student Care Centre from 2002 to June 2015, working under co-accused Gerard Michael, who owned the centre. She supervised the children and liaised with parents on the government-funded Student Care Fee Assistance scheme.
Student care centres under the scheme must submit withdrawal forms to MSF if parents withdraw their children from the centre, so the ministry would stop the disbursement and collect any refunds for excess funds.
Michael instructed Daljit not to submit forms for children who withdrew, and also told her to make false entries in attendance books and prepare supporting documents so it appeared as if the children were still attending the centre.
She did not inform MSF of the withdrawals of 12 children, and MSF disbursed excess subsidies of S$13,630 to Welcare between January 2015 and May 2015.
The centre made a total of S$48,280 in illegal claims between 2014 and 2016. Of this, S$29,410 of losses caused to MSF was from Daljit’s conspiracy with Michael. Welcare has returned S$28,762 to MSF, and S$19,518 remains outstanding.
SHE LIED TO HELP HIS MOTHER OBTAIN FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE
Separately, Michael also instructed Daljit to apply for ComCare for his mother in January 2015. ComCare is a government financial assistance scheme for needy households.
Acting on Michael’s instructions, Daljit went to a social services office in Ang Mo Kio with Michael’s mother and lied to the officer that his mother was jobless and did not have financial support from her children.
MSF approved the application and helped Michael’s mother pay for rental and conservancy charges for six months. It also credited S$340 per month into her bank account and gave her a medical assistance card.
Daljit’s lawyer said his client has indicated that she is willing to be a prosecution witness against Michael in his trial, and said she was “a mere pawn” used by him. The offences were committed at a low point in her life when she was “blinded by love” for Michael, said the lawyer.
The judge agreed that Daljit was not the mastermind, but said she should not have complied with the instructions given.
Published at Wed, 14 Oct 2020 07:10:38 +0000