Xtron bonds genuine
Text: Joelle Chong, Ilsa Chan and Kymie Hwang
Pictures from Internet and YouTube
Not only was City Harvest Church's (CHC) $13 million bond investment in Xtron productions genuine, it was an open matter, said Xtron director Koh Siow Ngea.
The bond subscription specified that funds from the bonds were to be used solely for the production of pop singer Ho Yeow Sun’s albums, and Xtron did just that.
Xtron managed her singing career of Ho, who is the wife of CHC founder Kong Hee, from 2003 to 2008. Her music career is part of the church's Crossover Project, which aims to use pop music for evangelism.
Koh agreed with Kong’s lawyer, Edwin Tong, that "not a single cent" of that $13 million was spent on any other purpose. He also acknowledged that there was nothing secretive nor sinister about the transactions.
A sum of $13 million was provided to Xtron under the first bond subscription agreement signed between CHC’s investing manager AMAC Capital Partners and Xtron.
Minutes of meetings also showed that the church Board and investment committee had discussed Xtron bond investments as well as its ability to redeem the bonds.
According to court documents, CHC transferred the funds to Xtron in four tranches between August 2007 and March 2008, and was to derive 7 per cent interest due on Aug 16, 2009.
CHC founder Kong Hee and five other senior church members Serina Wee Gek Yin, Tan Ye Peng, John Lam Leng Hung, Chew Eng Han and Sharon Tan Shao Yuen have been charged with alleged misuse of funds.
The six CHC members allegedly misused approximately S$24 million of church building funds to fund the music career of Kong Hee's wife, local singer Ho Yeow Sun who is better known as Sun Ho, and approximately another S$26 million to cover their tracks.
While Ho is mentioned in the charges, she is not charged because she is not involved in the misappropriation of funds.
According to Channel NewsAsia, defence lawyers for the six church leaders had tried to postpone the trial dates but this met with strong objection from the prosecution.
After hearing from the lawyers from both sides, District Judge Victor Yeo decided that the trial dates should remain unchanged as the case has been going on for almost a year, and it is in the public's interest that the trial is not postponed.
Earlier in March, The High Court dismissed an application by Chew Eng Han to engage a Queen's Counsel to defend him in the upcoming trial.
Chew, who is the church's investment manager, said there was a lack of available local senior counsels with the appropriate expertise to represent him.
However, Justice V K Rajah said that Chew's efforts to engage local legal counsel were not objectively reasonable and that a substantial pool of competent lawyers remains to be tapped. He has since appointed Senior Counsel Michael Khoo to represent him.
xinmsn takes you through the series of events and the key players in the City Harvest Case.
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