Madam Hedy Mok, a tour agency owner, had sued former tour guide Yang Yin in 2014 for allegedly manipulating her aunt, Madam Chung Khin Chun, into handing over control of her assets believed to be worth $40 million.
Fresh evidence was produced in the Court on Tuesday in the form of an affidavit by a new key witness, suggesting that the ex-tour guide held the assets in trust so as to look after the widow who is now 89.
Yang was a tour guide in China when he met Madam Chung in Beijing in 2008. He came to Singapore a few times after this meeting to visit the elderly woman, and during one such visit, he set up a music and dance studio with Madam Chung. He was eventually hired by the studio and obtained an Employment Pass to work in Singapore.
Shortly after, in 2010, Madam Chung made a will to leave her assets (including a $30 million Gerald Crescent bungalow), to Yang.
In 2011, Yang becomes a Permanent Resident of Singapore and the following year, he was given Lasting Power of Attorney by Madam Chung, giving him control over her welfare and assets. Yang then brought his whole family to Singapore from China in 2013, and they moved into the Gerald Crescent bungalow.
The Straits Times (ST) reported today that it has seen the affidavit which was produced at the closed-door pre-trial conference at the High Court. And in the affidavit, a personal banker who had served Madam Chung and former tour guide, said that the money that Yang claimed was gifted to him by the widow was only meant to be held in trust so that he could look after her.
“At all times, there was no mention (by Madam Chung) that the first defendant (Yang) could use any of Madam Chung’s monies for his own, save for the monthly sum of $5,000 to pay for his personal expenses while he resides in Singapore,” said the witness in his affidavit.
“I assisted with the transactions on the understanding that the funds would be used by the first defendant (Yang) to take care of Madam Chung,” the sworn statement read.
In his affidavit, the witness also said that he handled the purchase of two endowment plans by Madam Chung and Yang in 2010, which are now the subject of a High Court tussle between Yang and Madam Mok.
The personal banker said that the plans were bought on the agreement between Madam Chung and Yang that the widow’s estate is the “ultimate beneficiary”, and in the event of her death and Yang would hold the policies as trustee.
In April last year, when the High Court allowed Yang to use the monies in these the policies (worth about $98,000) to pay for his legal fees, Madam Mok has appealed that decision.
The submission of this new evidence has prompted the Court to set new trial dates so that Yang has time to prepare his rebuttal.
The trial which was to have started in March will now most likely he held next year.

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