Judge appointed for trial involving six City Harvest Church leaders; trial to start in May
Pastor Kong Hee (R in white) holds his wife Ho Yeow Sun’s hand as they leave the subordinate courts in Singapore on June 27, 2012. (AFP Photo/Roslan Rahman)
SINGAPORE – A judge has been appointed for the trial involving leaders of City Harvest Church.
District Judge See Kee Oon will preside over the trial that is set for 15 to 23 May, which was decided during a closed-door pre-trial conference held on Friday.
Six City Harvest Church leaders, including its founder Senior Pastor Kong Hee, are charged with misusing church funds.
The others are Serina Wee Gek Yin, Chew Eng Han, Sharon Tan, Tan Ye Peng and John Lam.
The six leaders are accused of conspiring to cheat the church of millions of dollars.
They allegedly channelled some S$24 million into sham bond investments, and misappropriated some S$26 million to cover up the first sum.
The money was allegedly used to boost the music career of Kong Hee’s wife, Sun Ho.
Channel NewsAsia understands that defence lawyers for the six Church leaders had on Friday tried to postpone the trial dates, although the reason for this was not disclosed.
Channel NewsAsia understands the prosecution “strongly objected” to the postponement of trial dates.
After hearing from the lawyers from both sides, District Judge Victor Yeo decided that the trial dates should remain unchanged.
It is understood this is because the case has been going on for almost a year, and it is in the public’s interest that the trial is not postponed.
Channel NewsAsia also understands that during a closed-door session held on 15 December 2012, the prosecution had already provided the defence counsel with court documents to facilitate the preparation of an agreed statement of facts for the trial.
A final closed-door session will be held on 23 April before the trial begins.
- By Leong Wai Kit
- POSTED: 05 Apr 2013 5:36 PM