Trio charged for opening unlicensed KTV joints during pandemic

·Senior Reporter
·3-min read
Singapore's State Courts seen on 21 April 2020. (PHOTO: Dhany Osman / Yahoo News Singapore)
Singapore's State Courts seen on 21 April 2020. (PHOTO: Dhany Osman / Yahoo News Singapore)

SINGAPORE — Three men were separately charged in court on Friday (30 July) for operating unlicensed KTV outlets which they also failed to keep closed, as required under COVID-19 regulations, late last year.

Teo Guoshun, 35, Thor Chi Tiong, 51, and Ong Han Wei, 38, face charges under the Public Entertainments Act, the Liquor Control Act and the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures)(Control Order) Regulations 2020.

All three men are Singaporean.

COVID and employment law breaches

Thor faces two charges of providing public entertainment without a licence, two charges of supplying alcohol without a valid licence, one charge of employment of a foreign employee without a valid work pass, and two charges of failing to keep premises closed.

He is said to have failed to keep his premises on the fourth floor of Oxley Bizhub, located in Tai Seng, closed to patrons on 4 December last year. He allegedly supplied Martell alcohol and provided recorded music videos there.

Thor is also accused of failing to keep EBIO, a separate joint located at 140 Paya Lebar Road, closed on 13 October at about 11.20pm. The premises allegedly provided recorded music videos and alcohol to patrons. He also employed Tang Teck Hwa, a foreigner who allegedly did not have a valid work pass, as a staff member in the illegal KTV outlet. 

The prosecution added that Thor will likely receive an additional charge under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act.

He will return to court for a further mention on 17 August.

KTV joints breached COVID rules

Teo allegedly operated an unlicensed KTV outlet at 83 Genting Lane, which is said to have supplied alcohol to patrons. He faces one charge of providing public entertainment without a licence, one charge of supplying alcohol without a valid licence, and one charge of failing to keep the premises closed on 26 November last year. 

He is also said to have provided recorded music to customers on a KTV system on the location.

Meanwhile, Ong is said to have worked with a co-operator to operate an unlicensed KTV outlet on the 10th floor of Oxley BizHub at Tai Seng on 24 September last year. He faces one charge each of providing public entertainment without a licence by providing karaoke sessions to customers at the premises, and failing to keep the premises closed at about 10.40pm on the same day. 

Both Ong and Teo are expected to plead guilty to their charges on 14 September. 

Those convicted of providing public entertainment without a valid license may be fined up to $20,000. If convicted of supplying any alcohol without a valid licence, a person may be fined up to $20,000. Repeat offenders face the same maximum fine, or a jail term of up to three months, or both.

Under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act, a person who employs a foreign employee without a valid work pass may be jailed up to a year, and fined between $5,000 and $30,000, or both.

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