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A 72-year-old uncle was cheated into believing that he owed the Singapore government money by two aunties, forking out S$200,000 over a span of 14 years.
The accused, a 67-year-old woman was charged on Thursday morning (Jun 1) with 169 counts of cheating, stating that she had led the victim to believe that he owed money to the late Minister Mentor Mr Lee Kuan Yew, reports Shin Min Daily News via Lianhe Zaobao.
Her accomplice who allegedly helped in the cheating has already passed on from a fall in 2016.
The cheating came to light in 2015 after a niece of the victim found that despite working two different jobs and fetching S$2,000 monthly, her uncle was constantly having to go hungry.
The victim even had to lend money from his sister and neighbour.
The victim’s niece eventually discovered that the two women had conned the man, telling him that he owed the government money, and solicited payments from him.
The accused faces the first charge, which stated that in June, 1996, she had cheated the victim, leading him to believe that he owed money to Mr Lee Kuan Yew, and asked him to draw S$53,162 from his CPF account.
The rest of the charges alleged that she had on various occasions between January 2000 and December 2013, con the victim into handing over S$500 to her accomplice each time.
According to the charges, both accused had between 1999 and 2013 cheated the victim out of over S$130,000, and the prosecution revealed in court that the amount involved exceeded over S$200,000.
The accused was legally represented by lawyer Mathew Kurian.
Kurian stated told the courts that his client does not intend to plead guilty.
The judge agreed to set the bail at S$200,000 and the trial will begin in Jul 22, 2017.
When interviewed, the victim said that he had forgiven the two accused, and if they needed the money, they could have just asked it from him.
He also told reporters that he was no longer in contact with the accused, and lives with his niece now who manages his finances, only drawing about a S$100 a month for daily expenses.