Malaysia Businessman John Soh & Girlfriend Quah Su-Ling Sentenced to 36 Years & 20 Years Jail by Singapore Court for 2013 $8 Billion Penny Stocks Market Manipulation, Blumont, Asiasons Capital & LionGold
28th December 2022 | Singapore
Malaysian businessman John Soh Chee Wen and girlfriend Quah Su-Ling had been sentenced to 36 years and 20 years jail respectively (28/12/22), after already found guilty by the Singapore high court in May 2022 (5/5/22) for the 2013 $8 billion penny stocks market manipulation, by driving up stock prices of Blumont, Asiasons Capital and LionGold Corp through 189 trading accounts in 20 financial institutions. Their conviction (May 2022) follows a trial of close to 200 days.. Mr Soh and Ms Quah were convicted of a total of 180 and 169 charges respectively. On 4th November 2022, the hearing arguments were made by the Prosecution and counsel for Mr Soh and Ms Quah. On 28th December 2022, the Singapore High Court meted out the sentence. Both Mr Soh & Ms Quah have indicated they will file an appeal agains the sentence. Assistant Managing Director, Policy Payments and Financial Crime, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), Loo Siew Yee, “The elaborate scheme master-minded by the offenders to manipulate shares listed on SGX led to large losses by investors and harmed public confidence in the integrity of Singapore’s capital markets. The successful prosecution and stiff sentences leave no doubt as to the authorities’ resolve in acting against such misconduct. MAS will continue to work in partnership with AGC, CAD and the industry to effectively detect, deter and prosecute bad actors, with the objective of ensuring that our capital markets remain fair, orderly and transparent.”
“ Malaysia Businessman John Soh & Girlfriend Quah Su-Ling Sentenced to 36 Years & 20 Years Jail by Singapore Court for 2013 $8 Billion Penny Stocks Market Manipulation, Blumont, Asiasons Capital & LionGold “
Singapore Chief Prosecutor, Tan Kiat Pheng: “The Prosecution is committed to act against offenders who engage in market manipulation and other offences that harm the investing public and financial market participants, and we will not tolerate any attempts to subvert our criminal justice system. We will continue to work closely with our law enforcement agencies and regulator to safeguard Singapore’s reputation as an international financial centre.”
Director of the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD), David Chew: “We take a serious view of criminals who manipulate the stock market, as their conduct undermines the integrity of Singapore’s capital markets. In order to protect the integrity of our capital markets, the authorities will vigorously pursue and prosecute criminals who manipulate or conspire with others to manipulate our capital markets.”
Joint Statement by Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC), Singapore Police Force (SPF) & Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) – On 28 December 2022, the High Court sentenced Mr Soh Chee Wen (also known as John Soh), and Ms Quah Su-Ling to a total of 36 and 20 years’ imprisonment respectively for, among other things, orchestrating an elaborate scheme to manipulate the shares of Blumont Group Ltd, Asiasons Capital Ltd and LionGold Corp Ltd between August 2012 and October 2013, and cheating two financial institutions.
Singapore MAS: Masterminds Behind The 2013 Penny Stocks Crash Convicted On Multiple Charges Of Market Manipulation & Cheating Of Financial Institutions
6th May 2022 – The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) released a statement on the conviction of Mr Soh Chee Wen (also known as John Soh), and Ms Quah Su-Ling (Quah) by the Singapore High Court for market manipulation and cheating offences involving an elaborate scheme to manipulate the shares of Blumont Group Ltd (Blumont), Asiasons Capital Ltd (Asiasons) and LionGold Corp Ltd (LionGold). Their conviction follows a trial of close to 200 days. Mr Soh and Ms Quah were convicted of a total of 180 and 169 charges respectively. Monetary Authority of Singapore: “Masterminds Behind The 2013 Penny Stocks Crash Convicted On Multiple Charges Of Market Manipulation & Cheating Of Financial Institutions” – See full statement release below.
1. On 5 May 2022, Mr Soh Chee Wen (also known as John Soh), and Ms Quah Su-Ling (Quah) were convicted by the High Court for market manipulation and cheating offences involving an elaborate scheme to manipulate the shares of Blumont Group Ltd (Blumont), Asiasons Capital Ltd (Asiasons) and LionGold Corp Ltd (LionGold). Their conviction follows a trial of close to 200 days. Mr Soh and Ms Quah were convicted of a total of 180 and 169 charges respectively.
2. Mr Soh and Ms Quah were charged on 25 November 2016 under the Securities and Futures Act (SFA) and the Penal Code (PC) for their elaborate and extensive scheme to manipulate the market and prices of Blumont, Asiasons and LionGold shares between August 2012 and October 2013. Mr Soh was also charged under the Companies Act (CA).
3. The High Court found that Mr Soh and Ms Quah carried out their conspiracies by controlling and using 187 trading accounts which belonged to 58 individuals and corporate nominees (controlled accounts) to make thousands of manipulative trades in each of the three counters. In particular, the trades between the controlled accounts were conducted to generate artificial liquidity and demand for these shares, to cause the share prices to rise over time, and to retain control of large amounts of shares without disclosing this to the market. The 58 account holders had handed over control of their accounts to Mr Soh and Ms Quah. This is the largest market manipulation case in Singapore’s history. During investigations, CAD and MAS raided over 50 locations and interviewed more than 70 persons. The investigations covered extensive documentary evidence comprising over two million emails, half a million trade orders, and thousands of telephone records and financial statements.
4. The High Court found Mr Soh and Ms Quah guilty of the following:
5. Mr Soh and Ms Quah will be sentenced at a later date. They face:
- imprisonment of up to seven years, a fine of up to $250,000, or both for each charge under sections 197 and 201 of the SFA,
- imprisonment of up to 10 years and a fine, for each charge under section 420 of the PC,
- imprisonment of up to seven years, a fine or both for each charge under section 204A of the PC, and
- imprisonment of up to two years, a fine of up to $10,000, or both for each charge under section 148 of the CA.
6. The third accused person, Mr Goh Hin Calm (Goh), was earlier convicted on 20 March 2019. Mr Goh, who was a key accomplice of Mr Soh and Ms Quah, pleaded guilty to two charges under Section 197 of the SFA for intentionally aiding the duo to create the false appearance with respect to the market for Blumont and Asiasons shares between 18 March 2013 and 3 October 2013. He was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment. Four similar charges were taken into consideration for the purpose of sentencing.
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