Too Late To Turn Back Time
Singleton Marc Alexander was the former Managing Director of Performance Motors Ltd. As Managing Director, part of his responsibilities was to review the yearly renewal of authorised dealership granted to local companies for the distribution and sales for BMW cars in Singapore. He also had the authority to approve or terminate dealerships.
The CPIB had received information on the case. Its investigation revealed that on 17 December 1999, Alexander received two Rolex watches from Teo Kian Hong, a Director of Teo Tian Seng Motor Credit Pte Ltd (TTS), as a Christmas present. In return, Teo had hoped that Alexander would continue to appoint TTS as one of the dealers for distributing BMW cars. Subsequently, Alexander had approached Teo with requests to buy more branded watches. On some occasions, Alexander would make a payment to Teo for the branded watches at a discounted price. But most of the time, Alexander would not pay back Teo for the branded watches. Teo did not seek payment from Alexander as she wanted TTS to continue to be an authorized dealer for BMW cars. The branded watches had a total worth of more than S$100,000. Alexander also obtained from Teo, 3 Nokia handphones and a sum of S$78,000.
Besides Alexander, Teo had also given bribes to Patrick Pow, the Director of Sales and Marketing at Performance Motors Ltd. In his position, Pow could recommend for renewal or termination of dealer agreements. Teo had given Pow a Hermes watch as a Christmas gift. Despite Pow knowing it was against company policy, he accepted the gift. From December 2000 to December 2002, Pow obtained from Teo branded watches with a total worth of S$4,165, a Nokia handphone worth S$1,388 and a loan of S$60,000.
Further investigation revealed that Pow has also obtained bribes from Kheh Thiam Hoo, Director of Skyway Credit & Leasing Pte Ltd (Performance Motors Ltd’s appointed sole finance agent), in return for the maintenance of a good business relationship with Skyway. Pow had received from Kheh, a Frank Muller watch worth S$13,390 for his birthday and loans amounting to S$82,000.
Marc Alexander was charged with corruptly obtaining gratification from Teo as an inducement to continue Teo’s dealership. He was fined S$185,000 and ordered to pay a penalty* of S$112,142 on 27 October 2005. Patrick Pow was charged with corruptly obtaining gratification from Teo Kian Hong and Kheh Thiam Hoo as an inducement to re-appoint their companies as dealers of Performance Motors Ltd. On 18 April 2005, he was fined S$120,000 and ordered to pay a penalty* of S$142,000.
* Penalty is an additional punishment (for corruption offences) imposed on the bribe taker to pay a sum which is equal to the amount of that gratification.