Prosecution’s star witness admits she ‘wasn’t truthful’ to CPIB

Cecilia Sue Siew Nang was escorted when she made a court appearance for the third day of the trial. (Yahoo! photo/ Deborah Choo)

The woman at the centre of a high-profile case against a former top civil servant told investigators a different version of her relationship with the accused from the testimony she gave on Wednesday.

In the third day of the trial against former Central Narcotics Bureau chief Ng Boon Gay for alleged sex-related corruption on Thursday, prosecution witness Cecilia Sue Siew Nang admitted during cross-examination by defence counsel Tan Chee Meng that she has changed her tune.

In responding to questions by Tan in court Thursday morning, the 36-year-old former IT sales executive insisted that there was no sexual relationship between her and the accused.

Tan then produced a record of the first statement she made with the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) on 20 December last year and read it out.

From the statement, the court heard that Sue, who wore a white shirt and a light cream coloured jacket, had admitted to having had sexual intercourse with Ng Boon Gay (Advisory to readers: graphic descriptions to follow).

The pair was supposed to meet at Great World City one day in 2009, and when they reached a service apartment he rented for his mother, “Boon Gay started to hug and kiss me” and that he quickly stripped himself of clothes, she claimed.

“He shifted my panties to insert his private part in me. He was very fast… he did not ejaculate inside me. When he was lying down, I gave him a blowjob,” Tan quoted her as saying.

Tan continued to read out Sue’s statement in court, “I blew him on his private part for awhile. During this occasion, he ejaculated in my mouth. I recall because I spit out his ejaculation out in the bathroom toilet.”
Sue went on to state that she had felt guilty after she returned home, but had told no one about the incident.

“I didn’t tell anyone… I was in a daze… I had more liking for Boon Gay,” Tan read out from the statement.

When questioned, Sue said, “I admit the initial statement with CPIB wasn’t truthful enough because that was the first time I was brought in by CPIB. I was confused… I had no sleep.”

She explained that she had not wanted to implicate anyone then. “It’s only after some thought that I thought I had to be truthful. And what I said today is the truth.”

Earlier when Tan questioned Sue bluntly in court, "Are you denying sex because you're concerned any admission on your part may affect your marriage, and may even affect custody of your daughter since divorce proceedings have started?"

Sue reacted in agitation, and clarified that things with her husband are fine, if not, "stronger than ever". She also added that her husband and her daughter are still living together. However, her husband was notably absent on both days she attended court.

In contrast to her relatively quick replies to questions from the prosecution over the past two days,  Sue repeatedly sought clarification of technical terms, and several times did not directly answer questions from Ng’s defence counsel.

At several points in the cross-examination, Sue would tell the defence lawyer she didn't understand what he was saying.

In her testimony on Wednesday, Sue painted the picture of a man who became increasingly desperate to obtain sexual gratification in the form of oral sex, despite being repeatedly rejected by Sue.

Ng is accused of corruptly obtaining sexual gratification on four occasions from Sue from June to December last year by assisting to further the business interests of her then employers Oracle Corporation Singapore and Hitachi Data Systems in dealings with CNB.

Sue claimed that on each of the four occasions she was an unwilling partner and that on several occasions, Ng had forcibly pushed her head towards his crotch in the car and there was contact between her mouth and his private parts.

On Thursday, however, Ng’s defence counsel presented records of phone whatsapp SMS between his client, Ng, and Sue that again shed a different light on their relationship.

The phone records revealed that  on 5 December at 9:40pm, three days after one of the encounters wherein the then CNB chief allegedly attempted to force her to perform oral sex on him, Sue sent him the message “MU” (miss you).

When Ng failed to reply, she sent another two messages the next morning. She texted Ng at 10:25am “you ignore me". Three minutes later, Sue texted again, “With her? Where’s family day?”

It was on 9 December when she met Ng again at the Singapore General Hospital’s carpark, where she alleged that she pushed Ng away over another of his sexual attempts.

Yet, five days after the alleged encounter that she was “disgusted” over, Sue sent a text message to Ng again.

“Sad, sad. Can we turn back the clock?”

And his reply was, “Back to Great World City time.”

At Tan’s probing, Sue said that her message meant that she had hoped to continue staying friends with no physical intimacy, but that “never happened”.

The 36-year-old admitted she would send “naughty” messages to friends sometimes, but that she had not had a intimate relationship with Ng, or those business associates she had classified as “friends”.

Sue had eventually admitted to sending a whatsapp message to Ng that read, "Do you DIY?" But when Tan asked her to tell the court her impression of the meaning "DIY", she said the DIY fix store comes to mind.

The strain on Ng’s wife was evident during the court proceedings, and looked at certain points deeply upset as she frowned in disdain at Sue’s claims.

Nonetheless, Ng’s wife of 18-years said after the session that she is going to “persist” in supporting her husband. She added that her faith remains “unwavering”.

Ng faces a five-year jail term if convicted, and a fine of S$100,000 for each of the four charges.

The hearing will resume on Friday morning.

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