Singapore

Case flags car importer for second time

The Consumers Association of Singapore (Case) has flagged a parallel importer of cars for questionable practices for the second time.

SG Vehicles is the first and only motor company to be black marked twice by the consumer watchdog, Case said.

Case told The Straits Times SG Vehicles had chalked up a "high volume" of complaints from consumers pertaining to "misleading claims, false claims and defective goods".

There were 39 complaints against the company last year, up from 36 in 2015. There were nine complaints in the first five months of this year.

Case said the company also operated under names like SG Vehicles Asia, SG Vehicles Continental and SG Vehicles Global.

The company, which operates out of Bukit Merah, was started in 1984 and is run by a married couple, Mark and Juliet Poh.

Case first flagged the company for unfair practices last year.

Common complaints were about late delivery of vehicles, persistently unsuccessful bidding for certificates of entitlement and buyers being told to pay more for their cars after a sales agreement had been signed.

"Case offered SG Vehicles the opportunity to respond to the consumers' feedback," the spokesman said.

"However, SG Vehicles failed to substantively respond by the stipulated time."

Other motor firms flagged recently by Case were De Auto Boutique, Exodus Global and Cars Today.

All have closed shop, with the boss of Cars Today - undischarged bankrupt Poh Chee Tiong - jailed last year for cheating 71 buyers, 14 sellers and four finance companies out of a total of $3.16 million in money and cars.

Car-related complaints continue to dominate Case's workload. Up to May this year, it received 1,024 complaints on this sector. The figures for 2016, 2015 and 2014 were 2,916, 2,907 and 2,112 respectively.

The association said it is usually able to resolve about two-thirds of car-related cases filed with it.

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