Saturday, 21 November 2015

Sentence of City Harvest Church leaders

Update 27 Nov 2015: Kong Hee To Appeal Conviction And Sentence

City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee said on Facebook on Friday (Nov 27) that he will be filing an appeal against his conviction and jail sentence.

The 51-year-old church leader was found guilty of criminal breach of trust and falsification of accounts in October. Ex-finance committee member Lam was sentenced to three years in jail, former finance manager Wee to five years, deputy pastor Tan Ye Peng to five years and six months, and former CHC fund manager Chew to six years. Former finance manager Sharon Tan got the lightest sentence of 21 months in jail.

"I will therefore be preparing to file an appeal against both my conviction and sentence", he said in a Facebook post. The road ahead is long and arduous, but God's grace is sufficient for me.

Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence

City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee is preparing to file an appeal against both his conviction and sentence, he announced on Friday (Nov 27).

"Whilst I respect the Court’s decision, there are points which appear to be erroneous and warrant appeal. I will therefore be preparing to file an appeal against both my conviction and sentence," he said in a Facebook post.

Kong was one of six City Harvest leaders in the recent trial, where he was sentenced to eight years' imprisonment for criminal breach of trust. The six were found guilty of misappropriating S$50 million of church funds.


PP v LAM LENG HUNG & OTHERS

PROSECUTION APPEALS AGAINST MANIFESTLY INADEQUATE SENTENCES
  • The six accused persons in the case of PP v Lam Leng Hung & Ors were found guilty and convicted for offences of criminal breach of trust as an agent under Section 409 and falsification of accounts under Section 477A of the Penal Code on 21 October 2015.
  • On 20 November 2015, Judicial Commissioner See Kee Oon, Presiding Judge of the State Courts, imposed custodial sentences on the six accused persons. The imprisonment terms range from eight years to 21 months. His full written grounds for these sentences were released on 23 November 2015.
  • Having carefully considered the written grounds, the Prosecution is of the view that the sentences imposed are manifestly inadequate, in all the circumstances of the case. The Prosecution has accordingly filed notices of appeal today,against the sentences imposed on all six accused persons.
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Prosecution appeals against City Harvest Church leaders' ‘manifestly inadequate’ sentencing

A week after six City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders convicted for fraud were sentenced to prison, the prosecution filed an appeal on Friday, saying the sentences ranging from 21 months to eight years were “manifestly inadequate”.

In a media statement issued by the Attorney-General's Chambers, the prosecution said it was appealing against the sentences imposed on all the six accused.

On Friday last week, Judge See Kee Oon sentenced CHC co-founder Kong Hee to eight years in jail, the longest of the sentences handed down.


Prosecution seeks longer sentence for CHC leaders

The prosecution for the trial against six City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders has appealed against the sentences imposed on them, while three of the six, among them church founder Kong Hee, said they intend to appeal against their conviction.

The Attorney-General’s Chambers today (Nov 27) said in a media statement that the prosecution had “carefully considered the written grounds” and filed notices of appeal, saying the sentences were “manifestly inadequate, in all the circumstances of the case”.

Last Friday, the six CHC leaders were sentenced by Presiding Judge of the State Courts See Kee Oon, with Kong receiving the heaviest sentence of eight years. The others received between 21 months and six years. They had been found guilty last month of criminal breach of trust and falsification of accounts.


Kong Hee jailed 8 years, others jailed between 21 months and 6 years

CITY Harvest Church founder Kong Hee has been sentenced to eight years' jail for his role in misusing millions of church funds.

related:
City Harvest trial: 8 years for Kong Hee
Final arguments made in court on Friday; sentencing expected at 3pm
Prosecution calls for 11 to 12 years' jail for Kong Hee and church leaders
City Harvest trial: Saga highlights crucial role of whistle-blower
Kong Hee and City Harvest Church leaders found guilty: What next?
Why It Matters: The City Harvest case
City Harvest Trial: Who's who

read more

Shocked faces after sentencing

Shock and disbelief crossed the faces of the six accused City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders yesterday as Judge See Kee Oon handed down prison terms for them.

After being sentenced, they emerged from the courtroom after frantic discussions with their lawyers. Former CHC fund manager Chew Eng Han had bloodshot eyes when he told The Straits Times: "No comment, you already know I want to appeal."

Tan Ye Peng had a blank look when he left, but he was not the only one who was at a loss for words. Former CHC finance manager Serina Wee, 38, appeared to be on the verge of breaking down when members of the media approached her.

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Kong Hee jailed 8 years, others jailed between 21 months and 6 years
Six City Harvest Church leaders were back in court on Nov 20, 2015. From top left: Kong Hee, Tan Ye Peng and Chew Eng Han. From bottom left: Sharon Tan, Serina Wee, John Lam. Photo: Ernest Chua

The six City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders convicted of criminal breach of trust and falsification of accounts have been sentenced, with founder Kong Hee getting the heaviest sentence of eight years.

Chew Eng Han received six years' jail, while Tan Ye Peng received five years and six months' jail. Serina Wee was sentenced to five years' jail and John Lam was sentenced to three years' jail. Sharon Tan received a jail sentence of 21 months.

Chew has said the will appeal, while the other said they have to think about it. If they appeal, they will have to file leave to appeal by Dec 2.

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Singapore church leaders jailed for pop venture fraud

Six Christian church leaders in Singapore were jailed Friday for misusing more than $35 million of church funds to turn the pastor’s wife into a global pop star.

State prosecutors said the failed project, which the church defended as an attempt to attract converts but involved raunchy music videos, was the biggest charity scandal in Singapore history.

City Harvest Church (CHC) head pastor Kong Hee, 51, was sentenced to eight years in jail. The remaining five were handed prison terms varying from 21 months to six years.

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Kong Hee sentenced to 8 years' jail
The City Harvest Church (CHC) trial, which spanned almost three years, has finally concluded, with six of its leaders being sentenced at 3pm on Friday (Nov 20)

According to media reports, founder and senior pastor Kong Hee has been sentenced to eight years of jail. Deputy senior pastor Tan Ye Peng has been sentenced to five years six months' jail, while former church investment committee member John Lam has been sentenced to three years' jail.

The church's former finance manager Serina Wee was given a sentence of five years in prison, while her colleague Sharon Tan received the lightest sentence of 21 months in prison.

Former church investment committee member Chew Eng Han received six years' jail, but he has told the court that he will appeal.

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8 years for Kong Hee

CITY Harvest Church (CHC) founder Kong Hee has been sentenced to eight years' jail for his role in misusing millions of church funds, on Friday. John Lam, former CHC finance committee member, has been sentenced to three years' jail for misusing millions of church funds to prop up Sun Ho's music career.

CHC's former fund manager Chew Eng Han, one of six leaders found guilty of misusing church funds has been sentenced to 6 years' jail. Deputy senior pastor Tan Ye Peng has been handed five years and six months' jail for misusing CHC funds.

Former CHC finance manager Serina Wee has been sentenced to five years in jail for colluding with five other CHC leaders in misusing church funds. Sharon Tan, former CHC finance manager of CHC, has been handed a sentence of 21 months' jail for her role in misusing church funds.

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Six City Harvest Church leaders sentenced to jail
Associated Press/Joseph Nair - City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee, center, arrives at court for his sentencing hearing Friday, Nov. 20, 2015 in Singapore. The founder of the popular Singapore church was found guilty Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, of misappropriating about $35 million in donations to support his wife's singing career in Asia before helping her break into the U.S. market for evangelization purposes. (AP Photo/Joseph Nair)

Six former City Harvest Church (CHC) members found guilty of misusing church funds last month were all sentenced to jail on Friday. In a packed court on Friday afternoon, after hearing final arguments earlier in the day, judge See Kee Oon gave the heaviest sentence – eight years in prison – to church co-founder and deputy senior pastor Kong Hee.

Chew Eng Han, Kong, John Lam, Sharon Tan, Tan Ye Peng and Serina Wee were convicted last month of criminal breach of trust involving S$24 million and using S$26.6 million to cover it up in a bid to boost the pop music career of Kong’s wife, Sun Ho, in the US.

Former finance manager Sharon Tan got the lightest sentence of 21 months in jail. Ex-finance committee member Lam was sentenced to three years in jail, former finance manager Wee to five years, deputy pastor Tan Ye Peng to five years and six months, and former CHC fund manager Chew to six years.

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City Harvest Church trial: Kong Hee jailed eight years
The six convicted City Harvest Church leaders were jailed between 21 months and eight years on Friday (Nov 20)

Church founder, Kong Hee, 51, got the longest sentence of eight years. This was followed by deputy senior pastor Tan Ye Peng, 42, who was jailed 5 1/2 years and former fund manager, Chew Eng Han, 55, who was jailed six years.

Former finance manager Serina Wee, 38, was jailed five years. Former finance committee member John Lam, 47, was jailed three years and another former finance manager, Sharon Tan, 40, got the lightest sentence of 21 months' jail.

Bail has been extended and they will serve their sentence from Jan 11, next year.

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Singapore megachurch leaders sentenced to jail for pop music fraud

The co-founder of a Singapore church and five other leaders were sentenced to jail terms of up to eight years on Friday, for fraudulently diverting millions of dollars to support his wife's pop singing career. The mix of faith and fraud has fascinated tightly-regulated Singapore, where such cases are rare in an affluent city-state with little tolerance for corruption.

Senior pastor Kong Hee heads City Harvest Church, one of a growing number of Singapore's megachurches preaching a "prosperity gospel" that blends spiritual and material aspirations. Six church officials were convicted last month of diverting nearly S$51 million ($36 million) in funds to advance the career of Kong's wife, Ho Yeow Sun.

They were sentenced on Friday to jail terms of between 21 months and eight years, depending on how involved they were in the fraud. The jail terms were delayed to January next year, giving the defendants time to appeal.

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Prosecution calls for 11 to 12 years' jail for Kong Hee and church leaders
It asks that 4 leaders be jailed 11 to 12 years each; sentencing could be as early as Friday

The Public Prosecutor has asked for stiff sentences for all six City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders, including the recommendation that church founder Kong Hee be sentenced to 11 to 12 years in jail, The Straits Times has learnt.

Apart from Kong, 51, the prosecution also recommended a jail sentence of 11 to 12 years each for deputy senior pastor Tan Ye Peng, 43; former CHC finance manager Serina Wee, 38; and former CHC fund manager Chew Eng Han, 55.

For former CHC finance committee member John Lam, 47, the prosecution asked for a jail sentence of eight to nine years. The lightest sentence of five to six years was reserved for former CHC finance manager Sharon Tan, 40.

read more

Full Coverage:
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
CHC's Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
CHC trial: Prosecution appeals against 'manifestly inadequate' sentences
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal against 8-year jail
Kong Hee on FB: I'm saddened by length of sentence
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee considering appeal of sentence
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal against 8-year jail
City Harvest's Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
CHC trial: Kong Hee jailed 8 years, others jailed between 21
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
CHC trial: Kong Hee jailed 8 years, others jailed between
City Harvest trial: Prosecution appeals 'manifestly inadequate' sentences
Prosecution appeals against 'manifestly inadequate' sentences
Prosecution appeals against City Harvest Church leaders' 'manifestly
Prosecution seeks longer sentence for CHC leaders
Sentences on CHC's six accused 'manifestly inadequate': prosecution
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal conviction and sentence
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee to appeal against 8-year jail term
Prosecution wants more jail time for all 6 City Harvest Church leaders

City Harvest Church trial: Kong Hee jailed eight years
Six City Harvest Church leaders sentenced to jail
City Harvest trial: 8 years for Kong Hee
City Harvest members plead for leniency for convicted leaders
City Harvest 'issued illegal loans', court told
Singapore megachurch leaders sentenced to jail for pop music fraud
Singapore's City Harvest church leaders jailed up to eight years for
City Harvest trial: Kong Hee sentenced to 8 years in prison, 5 other church
City Harvest Church trial: Kong Hee sentenced to 8 years' jail
City Harvest Church trial: Kong Hee jailed eight years
Six City Harvest Church leaders sentenced to jail
City Harvest trial: 7 quotable quotes from Friday's closing arguments
City Harvest trial: 7 quotable quotes from Friday's hearing
City Harvest trial live updates: Guilty to be sentenced
City Harvest trial live updates: Guilty back in court for oral submissions
City Harvest Church leaders sentenced to jail: Live updates
City Harvest Church trial: Kong Hee sentenced to 8 years' jail
City Harvest trial: Guilty back in court, supporters gather overnight
CHC trial: Kong Hee jailed 8 years,others jailed between 21 months & 6 years
City Harvest 'issued illegal loans', court told
City Harvest trial: Final arguments made in court on Friday; sentencing

Social Media on the Sentence of City Harvest Church leaders
Kong Hee (State: 11 to 12 years Judge: 8 years) Chew Eng Han (State: 11 to 12 years Judge: 6 years) Tan Ye Peng (State: 11 to 12 years Judge: 5 years 6 months) Serina Wee (State: 11 to 12 years Judge: 5years ) John Lam (State: 8 to 9 years Judge: 3 years) Sharon Tan (State: 5 to 6 years Judge: 21 months)

TR Emeritus: Imprisonment for Kong Hee and 5 City Harvest Church leaders
ASS: CHC LEADERS JAILED, KONG HEE RECEIVES 8 YEARS
Mothership: Numbers that matter in the City Harvest Trial sentencing
TheMiddleGround: Not a good Harvest for the State
RedWireTimes: City Harvest Gang of Frauds Jailed
MustShareNews: KH Will Have 8 Years To Set Up The Changi Prison Branch Of CHC
StatesTimesReview: Pastor KH sentenced to 8 years jail for cheating church funds
SixSixNews: City Harvest Church Sentencing
Blogging4myself: Kong Hee was hoping for a hefty fine

related:
5 CHC Leaders begin jail terms
City Harvest Church appeal against conviction
Sentence of City Harvest Church leaders
Verdict of City Harvest Church Trial
Mega Church Scandal In Singapore