Singapore Freezes Bank Accounts


“Singapore does not tolerate the use of its financial system as a refuge or conduit for illicit funds. Since the middle of last year, the Commercial Affairs Department and the Monetary Authority of Singapore have been actively investigating possible money-laundering and other offences carried out in Singapore.

“In connection with these investigations, we have sought and are continuing to seek information from several financial institutions, are interviewing various individuals, and have seized a large number of bank accounts,” . Quote from an official of the Monetary Authority of Singapore and its Commercial Affairs Department (Malaysian Insider)

A quote worthy of analysis coming from a sanctimonious state apparatus in a state built on illicit funds.


Lo Hsin Han the Burmese drug lord (of Chinese descent) whose mules Singapore hanged so liberally over the years, did not only park his drug money in Singapore bank accounts under its secrecy provisions. Singapore well aware of the origins of his funds, joint ventured with Lo in rapid property developments and other profitable high flying investments in Myanmar. They allowed Lo to first launder his funds in Singapore bank accounts. All of this was done under the cover of darkness because the world had embargoed the outlawed regime of the military government in Myanmar. But that would not stop the high moral state of Singapore from making a quick dirty buck out of the state and its people (Helen Vatsikopolous- Dateline Special Broadcasting Service-2003). Helen was banned from entering the island state city after her report went to air.


The blood thirsty Suharto cult of Indonesia is another contradiction of the above ‘principled’ statement by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

Suharto and his cronies piled all their ill gotten gains acquired from the rape and pillaging of Indonesia and its state coffers over 3 decades into Singapore bank accounts with the full knowledge and approval of Singapore’s Monetary Authority and its Commercial Affairs Department.

Much of the Suharto money trail was later traced to various accounts held in Singapore by Suharto’s Cukongs, prominent international and local law firms and the 4 major international accounting firms acting as nominees for the Suharto in Singapore.

Suharto’s Chinese Cukongs led by the late Liem Sioe Liem who also misappropriated and stole billions of dollars of state, international donour funds and loans out of Indonesian banks, parked his loot in Singapore banks with the full consents and knowledge of the MAS (Monetary Authority of Singapore). Singapore through the late Lee Kuan Yew heaped praise on Liem as a shining example of the qualities of the south east Asian Chinese. Industrious, hardworking, innovative, honest and creative. 

(Richard Borsuk and Nancy Chng- Liem Sioe Liong’s Salim Group “the business pillar of Suharto’s Indonesia- Published Institute of South East Asia Studies…… Confidential US State Department Reports on the Suharto family and government in Indonesia 1998).


Singapore has been the south east Asian conduit for the black assets of corporate and government thieves and drug producers in the region and from as far away as Mexico and Columbia it so sanctimoniously and hypocritically speaks out now against.

Singapore has been store and laundry, conduit and accessory to the blood money of many of the former dictators in the region and  far beyond.

Singapore’ banking clients in this regard include Ferdinand Marcos and his family, Prince Norodum Sihanouk, General Thieu and Air Marshall Ngyuen Cao Ky (Former presidents of Viet Nam), General U Ne Win of Myanmar, Thaksin Shinawatra (and his predecessors in office Thanom Kitikachorn and a number of former generals) of Thailand, and the more benign depositors like the Tengku Abdul Rahman, Khoo Teck Phuat, almost all of the Sultans of Malaysia, prominent members of parliament and cabinet, the legal fraternity and a host of other industrialists and institutions from Malaysia.

Singapore’s very precious words as to why they are partaking in this investigation along with the Swiss prosecutors office in Zurich against the Prime Minister of Malaysia and the so called 1MDB ‘corruption’ (read destablization of Malaysia) is fraught with contradictions, difficulties and dangers for the Island state. It will inevitably backfire on them which it must.


Australian intelligence and their American counterparts stationed in Singapore have identified accounts of ISIS money men in Singapore banks. These include accounts belonging to supporters and operatives of the ISIS terror organization moving large amounts of money to and through Singapore bank accounts  some via third party dummy corporations leading to Singapore’s Charter Industries, to Toyota and to other suppliers to acquire equipement, light arms and ammunition for ISIS in its operations in Syria.

It is not the first time Singapore’s ‘dancing with the devil’ has been caught out in the light of day.

Singapore banked the notorious Tamil Tigers of Sri Lanka. They hosted the Tigers  shipping companies, their arms purchases and logistics headquarters. (not forgetting the C 4 plastic explosives used to assassinate former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was traced back to a batch supplied to the Tamil Tigers by Charter Industries of Singapore).

Charter Industries is a Singapore government owned and controlled arms manufacturer.

When Ferdinand Marcos was forced to flee the Philippines aboard an American Air force jet in 1986, he did not, as was widely believed then, take all that he had looted from the Philippines out of the Philippines that day on that Air force jet.

Years later an intelligence leak revealed that Lee Kuan Yew was overheard through American and British intelligence wiretaps speaking to Juan Ponce Enrille the then defence secretary of the Philippines ( and a personal friend of Lee’s) confirming what he  Lee had been told: ” the transfers had cleared and were safely in Singapore“.  The transfers referred to in that conversation is said to be a reference to nearly US$ 2 billion which went through Singapore Banks first before the Marcos’ ordered it transferred to accounts in Switzerland from Singapore.

The Swiss use Singapore to launder dirty money through a series of ’round robin’ transactions before it finally reaches its Swiss destination cleaned with a new untraceable identity.

Each of these transactions and the dummy corporations it is carried out under ‘evaporates’ after the money is transferred to another secret jurisdiction in the name of another dummy corporation, ending up with the winding up of each dummy corporation as the money leaves each jurisdiction till it arrives in its final destination of Switzerland. It takes minutes to accomplish the laundering and transfers through 4 countries.


Corrupt Indian government officials and tax dodgers now prefer to use Swiss accounts in Singapore rather than have them subject to the laws of the Swiss because of Switzerland’s vulnerability to US and West European government pressures.

India today is one of Singapore’s largest banking customers. Most of its illicit, corrupt and tainted money, corrupted in every sense of the word under Singapore and Indian law is comfortably first parked in a Singapore government supervised laundromat which Singapore denies exists. And the Singapore banks and its Monetary Authority is fully aware of it.


As a monetary authority and super manager of funds, Singapore’s recent track record in respect of its handling of dirty money requires some soul searching of its own. But there will be no Shannon Teoh Sunday Times report admonishing the state or repeating what we write here. After all Shannon Teoh the ‘Chevening scholar’ was prepared to repeat slurs and allegations by unnamed and unidentifiable sources for his report on Malaysia’s 1MDB a without repercussions which he is unable to do in Singapore with or without first hand evidence.

At the height of the Global Financial Crisis in 2007-2008 it was discovered and tacitly admitted to by Singapore’s government that its sovereign fund Temasek under the capable guidance  of its chief, the wife of prime minister Lee Sien Loong, lost around US$65 billion in bad investments channeled into the financial and banking sectors in Europe and the US.

No disclosures of any significance was made by Singapore’s government as to how where and why these investments turned sour. All that the government in Singapore was prepared to say was that its people would have to work harder and longer to make up for what was degraded and lost in their pensions managed by the state in these bad investments.

Perhaps Shannon Teoh will do a report on the loss of US$65 billion of Singaporean funds which when compared to 1MDB’s $4 billion ‘losses’ is staggering, monumental and worthy of reporting.



8 thoughts on “Singapore Freezes Bank Accounts

  1. And the object of all this vitriolic outpourings are….?

    Methinks that thou dost protest too loudly. Why?

    Let’s see…..

    Have the Indonesian and Philippines governments post-Suharto and post-Marcos made formal attempts to recover the billions allegedly stashed in Singapore? Have they applied for accounts and assets in Singapore to be frozen? Have they taken out worldwide Mareva injunctions against these assets and funds?

    There is a clear and transparent judicial process to do all of this. This has not happened.

    Why is best known to the Indonesian and Philippines governments. Are they not accountable to their own citizens to recover these ill-gotten assets and funds?

    Ditto for the government’s of India, Malaysia and Myanmar.

    The current state of Singapore’s relations with all of these countries, and also with China and the US, is regarded as “excellent” and “cordial”. Heads of state and heads of government visit Singapore on a regular basis. Aquino, Jokowi, Modi, Xi etc all want to do business with Singapore and all want Singapore investments in their countries. Not exactly a diplomatic freeze out and a banishment to the proverbial Coventry, is it?

    So, even if the vitriol spews forth, realpolitik is alive and well.

    And I suspect that sticks in your craw. Big-time.


    1. You make a valid point. The point we made was in response to your defence of Teoh’s nonsense report.

      Third hand reporting of what some else said without a proper source is an embarrassment for any journalist worth his salt. Teoh’s allegations by imputation are serious and continue a defamation and a set of unproved unprovable allegations against someone without proper legal grounding.

      The Jews continue to have excellent relations with the Germans and the Swiss. It was not till the late 1980’s that the judicial processes there bore any fruit. The point of it all is that inspite of the overwhelming evidence about what the Nazis did, the Germans and other defendants were entitled to a defence where proper disclosures were made by the survivor Jews.

      The inquiries into the Suharto and Marcos billions continues to this day.States don’t freeze relations with others (except where the US is concerned as with Iran and Libya) they are in conflict with. There are some exceptions. But these are exceptions. As to whether a state wishes to prosecute such matters it is a sovereign matter. Indonesia is no paragon of virtue when it comes to clean government and graft. It is too deeply embedded in their culture to overcome overnight. Singapore is committed to protecting the Cukongs. There are cross jurisdictional issues not easily overcome by any single government. As Switzerland and Singapore depend so much on such money as an integral part o their economy and for their survival, nothing is about to happen overnight to resolve the illegality o the money in their accounts. It will take time. But it is hypocritical of them to have made the pious statements about not wanting to be conduits etc. Thats our point. Pot calling the kettle black!

      We don’t protest too loud at all. We simply think we have hit a raw nerve with a Chinese observer who has been led to believe all this while that Singapore is as squeaky clean as it claims to be. Not so. Not even according to the ABC reports about Mr. Phua and his Triads who operate with the likes of Wilson Perumal (all Singaporeans and Malaysians) illegal gambling rings fixing games out of Singapore. The government there has known about it for decades and turns a blind eye to it as it did with the illegal tin concentrates in the 1980’s.


      1. What exactly has Teoh reported in the Singapore Straits Times that will have a lawyer rubbing his or her hands in glee at the prospect of a juicy defamation case?

        Go on, quote chapter and verse.

        Both the Singapore Straits Times and Singapore Business Times papers have published reports on this subject over the past few days. As you are no doubt aware.

        As for the rest of your post, it’s basically hurling cheap shots against Singapore. Hasn’t detracted any from Singapore’s performance, rankings etc. Maybe that gets your goat, seeing as how countries who should know better are blissfully oblivious to Singapore’s shortcomings and sins.

        That includes Malaysia, Indonesia, China, Myanmar, Russia, Australia and the US.

        And spare a thought for the thousands of Malaysians who “cari makan” in the city-state.

        Maybe they are irrelevant when viewed from your lofty eyrie.


      1. One swallow does not a summer make. Singapore remains a haven for illicit money not on one complaint or analysis alone but on the sheer volume of evidence stacked against it. Switzerland now sends its dirty money to Singapore before it is returned to Swiss accounts because the legislation and processes in Singapore for such money is a lot less stringent. Now that it is in the spotlight, Singapore says it is changing its ways. An indication that for decades it was not doing what others consider to be right or clean.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s