Singapore—In a classic case of ‘he says’ versus ‘she says’ one businessman is suing his former mistress to get back the S$2 million that he claims was a loan, but she says was a gift.
Businessman Toh Eng Tiah, age 55, gave the amount of S$2 million to his mistress, Angelina Jiang, over a period of three months, from December 2016 and March 2017.
He says that the money he gave her was a loan, and therefore must be repaid.
But the 33-year-old Ms Jiang, a property agent, has shown messages sent over chat to prove that the money that Mr Toh gave her was a gift and not a loan and that there is no need for her to give it back to him.
The case was heard in High Court on Monday, August 19. The Straits Times (ST) reports that Ms Jiang’s lawyer, Mahesh Rai, said that Mr Toh acted “dishonorably” since he was reneging on his own statements that the money was a gift and was trying to force Ms Jiang to pay him back.
As the case began, the messages that Mr Toh sent to Ms Jiang were shown in court. In one he tells her that she doesn’t “need to pay the money back to me.”
In another he writes, “I have given you $2 million as a gift”.
In yet another message he says, “Give birth to a daughter will have a reward of 2 million.”
The lawyer for Ms Jiang said in n opening statement, “The evidence will show that the parties were in a romantic relationship and that the monies had been given to Ms Jiang unconditionally as gifts.”
Anthony Lee, who is Mr Toh’s lawyer, said that Ms Jiang is a “money grabber,” as he responded to the opening statement, claiming that the money his client gave to Ms Jiang was a loan and that Mr Toh had never planned to give it as a gift.
Mr Toh has two older children from his first marriage and another from a previous relationship. He is still married but has no children with his current wife.
Ms Jiang, a former Chinese national who obtained citizenship in Singapore in 2014, has two children from a previous marriage. She owns two properties and earns as much as $700,000 annually.
In November 2016, Mr Toh first reached out to Ms Jiang in a professional capacity and started a relationship with her soon afterward.
According to Ms Jiang’s lawyer, Mr Toh gave her many luxurious presents as well as access to the personal identification number to his debit card.
In January 2017, Mr Toh promised her at a temple that he would set up a home for her, pay for her living and credit card expenses, etc, telling her that his marriage was an unhappy one and that he needed help in looking for a divorce lawyer.
The couple entered into a loan agreement by March 24, 2017, drawn up by their lawyers, although Mr Toh has already given Ms Jiang more than S$1 million. After they signed the loan agreement, he gave her an additional S$872,000.
Less than a month later, Ms Jiang discovered that she was pregnant, but by the following month, she could no longer contact Mr Toh.
In June, the property agent received a letter from the lawyers of Mr Toh, asking for repayment of the S$2 million he had given her.
Shortly after that, she had a miscarriage, Mr Toh claims the child was not his. He has also refused to take a paternity test.
The two parties in the case now claim that the loan agreement is invalid. According to Ms Jiang, it was only drawn up so that Mr Toh could prove to his wife that the money would be returned to him, while Mr Toh claims that he made the agreement while he was under his former mistress’ undue influence and that the terms of the contract were unfair to him.
Still, he claims that it is proof that the money he gave her was a loan and not a gift.
The case will continue to be heard in court. /TISG