S'porean, 39, forges employment letter for passport application & NS deferment, gets jail

He claimed he was offered a job as a project manager at a construction firm.

Khine Zin Htet | January 29, 2024, 01:48 PM



In a bid to induce the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) to approve his passport application in September 2022, a Singaporean man forged a letter stating he had been offered a job as a project manager at a construction firm.

The truth came out after authorities called the company's managing director for verification.

Winson Chua Xianwen, 39, also forged another letter to MHA’s national service (NS) portal in his application for a deferment of his in-camp training (ICT) period in 2023, according to The Straits Times.

He pleaded guilty to two counts of forgery for the purpose of cheating and was sentenced to 10 months in jail on Jan. 25, 2024.

Passport cancelled in 2015

Chua’s passport was cancelled in 2015, ST reported.

On Sep. 5, 2022, he applied for a passport and sent a letter purportedly from a managing director of a construction firm in his application via e-mail.

The letter was a forged letter of appointment, dated Aug. 1, 2022, bearing the managing director’s digital signature and the company’s letterhead.

It stated that Chua had been offered a job as a project manager at the firm, and his job scope included liaising with Malaysia-based clients and suppliers.

Authorities called the purported managing director

Authorities contacted the managing director, who said that Chua did not hold any position in the company.

He did not draft the letter and was not even aware of its existence, the man told investigators.

Another forgery for deferment of ICT

Chua also forged documents to support his application for a deferment of his ICT, which was slated to take place between Mar. 27 and Apr. 9, 2023.

He submitted a letter bearing the construction firm's letterhead and the "managing director's" digital signature, which he created using Microsoft Word, to MHA's NS portal.

The application for deferment was approved on Jan. 10, 2023.

Sentenced to 10 months' jail

The prosecution sought a sentence of 11 months’ jail, stating that his offences were premeditated.

However, the defence pleaded for a shorter jail term as they said Chua's offences had caused no financial losses.

Chua was eventually sentenced to 10 months in jail.

He will begin his sentence on Feb. 19.

Top photo from Canva