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Ex-PAP MP and NTUC president Phey Yew Kok charged for corruption decades after jumping bail
MORE than three decades after he jumped bail and fled Singapore, former National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) president and People's Action Party member of parliament Phey Yew Kok appeared in court on Wednesday to face corruption charges served on him in 1979.
Phey had been charged in December 1979 for four counts of criminal breach of trust involving S$82,520, as well as two counts under the Trade Union Act for investing S$17,745 of trade union money in a private supermarket without approval.
He was then released on bail at S$100,000 but did not have his passport impounded. A warrant of arrest was issued against him after he failed to turn up in court on Jan 7, 1980. His two bailors lost S$95,000 of their bail bonds.
On Monday, Phey, now 81, turned himself in at the Singapore Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand. He was escorted back to Singapore by CPIB officers on Tuesday.
The Straits Times reported that the prosecution has applied for Phey to be remanded at Changi Prison for investigations and more charges will be tendered against him. A pre-trial conference has been scheduled for July 23.
In response to media queries, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said: "Phey Yew Kok was facing charges of criminal breach of trust when he absconded while on bail in 1980. He has now turned himself in and returned to Singapore. He has been charged in court, and the law will have to take its course. This will bring closure to a long outstanding case involving a person who was holding public office as an MP and a senior union leader."
In a brief media statement, NTUC also noted the development and said: "We must now let the law take its course."