New former CEO of Silkroutes Group, Go Jin Hian, and three others have been charged with market manipulation

The former CEO of Singapore-based New Silkroutes Group, Go Jin Hian, and three other men were charged in state courts on Wednesday with a total of 132 counts related to false commercial crimes.

The three other defendants are the former corporate director of a healthcare and energy company, Kelvin Oo Chong Kwan and former CFO William Teo Tiam Chuan, as well as Huang Yiwen, sole director of GTC Group, a commercial market maker hired by New Silkroutes. .

Market makers help to ensure sufficient liquidity in the markets.

Goh, 54, the son of former Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong, was CEO of New Silkroutes from 2015 to 2020. He also stepped down as an independent and non-executive chairman of the group in 2020.

In a statement released on Wednesday, police said each of the four men had been charged under the Securities and Futures Act with 31 counts of conspiracy to create a false representation of the stock price of New Silkroutes.

They allegedly placed orders and made transactions with the company’s shares in order to increase the price of its shares during 31 business days in the period from February 26 to August 27, 2018.

According to police, the alleged orders and transactions included share buybacks made through the company’s corporate business account.

Gou was charged with eight more charges of violating the rules of securities circulation. He allegedly placed orders and made transactions with the company’s securities through his personal trading account at DBS Private Bank in order to increase the share price of New Silkroutes within eight business days from August 31 to December 4, 2018.

The actions of New Silkroutes have been suspended since November 15, 2021.

Gow was offered $150,000 bail, while for 54-year-old Theo, it was set at $100,000. 52-year-old Oo and 40-year-old Juan were offered bail of $70,000 each.

If found guilty of a crime under section 197 of the Securities and Futures Act, they face up to seven years in prison or a maximum fine of $250,000, or both.

In October 2020, New Silkroutes announced that Guo had resigned as an independent non-executive chairman in order to “devote more time to his personal affairs.”

Theo, for his part, resigned the same month to “focus on personal matters and pursue other interests.” Oo left his post in August 2020.

Their resignation came after the company disclosed that Guo and Teo had been assisting the Police Department of Business Affairs (CAD) with investigations.

The charges were brought as a result of a joint investigation between CAD and the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

In addition, in April, a trial began in the High Court between the liquidators of the insolvent marine fuel supplier Inter-Pacific Petroleum (IPP) and Guo, its former director, over losses of more than $156 million as a result of his alleged violation of the rights of the director. duties.

Lawyers of the liquidators of IPP, who intend to recover this amount, accused Guo of “walking in his sleep during his tenure as director” and that in the period from June to July 2019, he did not detect and did not stop withdrawing funds to finance the business in order to finance the alleged “non-existent”.or false transactions.”

But Guo said the lawsuit was a “blatant attempt to make a scapegoat out of him” because he “did not participate in any fictitious transactions.”

The civil trial ended on May 11, and the parties are awaiting sentencing.

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