Couple allegedly received $24.7m for branded watches they knew they couldn't deliver

Nadine Chua
The Straits Times
Oct 5, 2023

More than a year after they were first charged, the couple allegedly involved in a luxury goods scam involving $32 million worth of undelivered items were handed more charges on Thursday.

Thai national Pansuk Siriwipa, 28, was given 166 new cheating charges and two more charges for fraudulent trading.

She and her husband Pi Jiapeng, also 28, were each hit with one new charge of allegedly taking orders for luxury watches and collecting payments amounting to more than $24.7 million from customers of Tradenation between March and June 2022.

They allegedly knew it could not fulfil the orders, given its financial state.

Pansuk is also accused of taking orders for luxury bags and collecting payments of $946,948 from customers of Tradeluxury when she knew the orders could not be fulfilled.

According to court documents on her cheating charges, Pansuk allegedly deceived Tradenation’s customers that she would fulfil orders for luxury watches, thus leading them to hand over more than $11.7 million in payments for these watches.

She also purportedly deceived Tradeluxury’s customers into handing over more than $214,000 in payments for luxury bags.

Pansuk faces a total of 172 charges, including a charge of leaving Singapore after surrendering her travel documents.

Pi was handed two new charges on Thursday, including one for failure to use reasonable diligence as a director.

The Singaporean now faces seven charges overall, including one count of failing to be available for investigations by not reporting for bail, and another count of refusing to sign a statement he made.

The couple made headlines in July 2022 after at least 180 police reports were lodged against their businesses, Tradenation and Tradeluxury.

Their clients had made advance payments for luxury watches or luxury bags, but they allegedly failed to deliver the goods. The items included Rolex and Patek Philippe watches and Hermes bags.

Pi was arrested on June 27, 2022, for his suspected involvement in cheating offences. His passport was impounded, and he was released on bail the next day.

Pansuk was not arrested then but was assisting with police investigations. She had surrendered her passport on June 30.

The couple became uncontactable and fled Singapore in a container compartment of a lorry on July 4.

Warrants of arrest and Interpol red notices were issued against them.

The Singapore Police Force had said it received information on Aug 10 from the Royal Thai Police that the couple might be staying at a hotel in Johor Bahru.

The next day, they were arrested at the hotel after more than a month on the run.

On Aug 12, they were each handed three charges – two over cheating and one charge of leaving Singapore illegally.

They were denied bail that month after a judge agreed with the prosecution that they were flight risks.

Their cases have been set for a pre-trial conference next Wednesday.

In September 2022, two Malaysian men were each sentenced to a year’s jail for helping the couple flee Singapore.

They pleaded guilty to offences under the Immigration Act.

The Straits Times

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