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Shaffiq Alkhatib, Chin Hui Shan
The Straits Times
Sept 12, 2022
The director of a wholesale trading firm who would have been fined for food-related offences must now spend time behind bars after she threatened to falsely accuse a Singapore Food Agency (SFA) officer handling her case of molesting her.
Wang Shu, 41, who is also a shareholder of the company Thanksgiving Group, was on Monday sentenced to four weeks’ jail over the threat of injury to the man’s reputation.
She was also fined $5,000 for food-related offences including illegally importing meat products and salted duck eggs.
Her offences came to light in July 2020, when Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers at the Pasir Panjang Scanning Station, Ports Command, detected anomalies in the scanned images of a 40-foot container from China.
In a joint statement on Monday, ICA, SFA and the Singapore Police Force said the officers conducted checks and uncovered five pallets of undeclared food products without a valid import permit.
The case was then referred to SFA for investigation.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Emily Koh said that on Oct 29, 2020, the SFA officer and two colleagues went to Wang’s Pandan Loop office to investigate the case.
Wang was asked to provide her statement regarding the illegal food products. She agreed and invited the officers to a room next to her office for the interview.
During the interview, a check was conducted on her mobile phone and incriminating communications were detected.
Wang started to become uncooperative towards the man’s colleagues and requested to end the interview. When his colleagues left the room to avoid further agitating Wang, the officer tried to calm her down on his own.
But Wang refused to calm down so he decided to end the interview, the court heard.
While he was packing his belongings, she asked him repeatedly to hand over the partially recorded statement, but he turned down her requests.
DPP Koh told the court: “The accused then got up from her seat and stood in front of the room’s door, which was the only exit. The accused closed the door and locked it, holding on to the door knob.
“The accused threatened the (officer) that if he refused to hand over the statement to her, she would shout ‘molest’.”
As a result of the threat, the officer gave the statement to Wang, who tore it up. After that, she opened the door to let him out.
“The accused had also admitted that at that point she did not believe that the complainant was going to outrage her modesty,” added DPP Koh.
Separately, in their joint statement, the three agencies said that Wang had illegally imported around 36kg of food products, including sausages, beef jerky and salted duck eggs. The items were seized.
She had also advertised the illegally imported meat products for sale on her Facebook account.
As illegally imported food products are from unknown sources and can pose a food safety risk, they can be imported only by licensed importers and every consignment must be declared and accompanied with a valid import permit, the agencies said.
In addition, meat and its products can be imported only from accredited sources in approved countries that comply with Singapore’s food safety standards and requirements.
Those found guilty of illegally importing meat products can be fined up to $50,000, jailed for up to two years, or both. Repeat offenders can be fined up to $100,000, jailed for up to three years, or both.
For the threat of injury to a public servant, an offender can be jailed for up to two years or fined, or both.