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Singapore Sentences Two Indian-Origin Men for Scamming via 50 US Firms

Ishan Sharma and Kandhiban Letchumanansamy, both of Indian origin, have been sentenced to jail in Singapore for their involvement in a multi-million dollar scam spanning over 50 companies. The scam primarily targeted victims in the United States and involved international transactions including from China and the UAE.

Sharma, 34, received a four-week jail term after pleading guilty to two charges under the Companies Act. He orchestrated the scheme and induced Kandhiban, 36, who pleaded guilty to one charge, into negligence as a director of the implicated firms. Kandhiban was sentenced to a week in jail for failing to supervise the companies' operations.

According to court documents reported by The Straits Times, the offenses occurred between 2019 and 2020, during which Sharma, a chartered accountant, exploited his acquaintance with Kandhiban, who was unemployed at the time. Sharma employed Kandhiban as a nominal director for multiple companies, paying him SGD 500 per month for his role.

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The scheme involved Sharma liaising with individuals like Aashish Nanda and Indian national Rahul Batra to set up companies in Singapore, such as Quartz Resources and Kiora Worldwide. These companies received significant sums from scam victims, totaling over SGD 583,000 and USD 480,000 respectively, which were subsequently transferred to accounts in other countries.

Despite being listed as directors, Kandhiban had no involvement in managing the companies and did not oversee their financial activities, including the receipt and transfer of scam proceeds. The court noted that Sharma orchestrated the operations, meeting with associates like Rahul Batra to finalize arrangements after incorporating the companies.

The sentencing highlighted Sharma's role as the mastermind behind the fraudulent activities, emphasizing that the scam proceeds remain unrecovered. The case underscores Singapore's vigilance against financial fraud and the severe penalties for those involved in such schemes.

July 10, 2024 4:02 p.m. 416

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