Bigamist found dead on day he's due to go to jail
On the day he was meant to begin a two-month jail sentence for bigamy, the businessman was found dead in an upscale condominium in the Orchard area.
Tan Tee Wee, 48, was sentenced to jail last November for marrying Ms Esther Tan Wee Yee, now 39, in New Zealand in 2010 despite being already married here. (See report below.)
Bigamy is illegal in Singapore.
The CEO of an events management company then asked to defer his sentence so he could spend the school holidays with his three children, aged between 12 and 18.
On Wednesday, when he was due to surrender himself to the courts to serve his sentence, Tan was found dead in a 12th-storey apartment at the Hilltops condominiumat Cairnhill Circle.
A police spokesman said they received a call for assistance at 3.58pm and arrived to find Tan lying motionless. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.
The cause of death is not known. It is also unclear who had discovered the body and if the apartment belonged to Tan.
Police investigations are ongoing.
Tan's lawyer, Mr Louis Joseph, also confirmed his death to The New Paper.
Mr Joseph said his client's wife, Madam Goh Geok Tin, claimed Tan's body from the mortuary yesterday.
When TNP visited Hilltops last evening, most of the units seemed unoccupied as the condominium was mostly dark.
Despite being close to an expressway exit, the neighbourhood was quiet. The condo security declined to let TNP go up to the unit.
A house at Carmichael Road, off Braddell Road, was listed by Tan and Madam Goh on their business records as their address.
It was dark, except for a porch light. No one answered the door.
At Stirling Road, the address which shows up on Ms Tan's business records, a man who answered the door said he did not know her.
FLAT RENTED OUT
A neighbour, Mr Madhu Jonnada, said the couple, who had lived there for many years, rented out the flat about four months ago.
The owner, whom Mr Madhu knew only as "Uncle", told him that he and his wife were moving in with their daughter in Tiong Bahru.
When contacted, Ms Tan's friend, who had accompanied her to the State Courts during Tan's sentencing, said she was shocked by the news of his death.
She declined to comment further and requested not to be named.
Chinese evening newspaper Shin Min Daily News quoted a friend of Ms Tan's as saying that Ms Tan hired a private investigator to check on Tan in October 2013 after growing suspicious of his late nights, during which he claimed to be monitoring the stock markets.
The investigation allegedly revealed that not only was Tan having an affair, he had also lied when he claimed to be divorced from Madam Goh.
ABOUT THE CASE
Tan Tee Wee, who ran an events company, got to know Ms Esther Tan Wee Yee in 2000 when they were colleagues, and became an item the following year.
At the time, he told her he was going to file for separation from his wife, Madam Goh Geok Tin.
In 2010, Tan and Ms Tan tied the knot in New Zealand after he said he had "unresolved tax issues" with Madam Goh in Singapore.
Ms Tan believed him and they registered their marriage at the Auckland Marriage Registry on Feb 25, 2010. They even threw a lavish wedding dinner at the St Regis Hotelin Singapore.
After a confrontation with Ms Tan in 2013, Tan admitted that he was still married to Madam Goh.
Ms Tan lodged a police report against him on Nov 25 that year. Investigations revealed that Tan had never started divorce proceedings against Madam Goh. A search of business records also show Madam Goh as a director in his company.
He pleaded guilty to bigamy on Nov 26 last year and was sentenced to two months' jail. He asked for his sentence to be deferred so he could spend the school holidays with his children.
District Judge Shaiffudin Saruwan approved the request, and Tan's sentence was to begin on Wednesday. For the offence, he could have been jailed up to seven years and fined.