Singapore

Woman allegedly offered 2,000 euros to STTA director

She had admitted in a statement to the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) that she intended to offer cash to a Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA) director as she wanted him to help her son.

Chinese national Su Fengxian, the mother of former national table tennis player Li Hu, is now on trial after allegedly offering 2,000 euros (S$3,200) to STTA technical director Loy Soo Han on Oct 17 last year as an inducement to show leniency in Mr Li's disciplinary case.

On the first day of her trial yesterday, the court heard that Su's son was not around when she put 2,000 euros into an envelope.

This was revealed in her statement to CPIB principal special investigator Tay Beng Kwan on Oct 19 last year. She told Mr Tay that she went to Mr Loy's office with her son to plead for leniency.

In her statement, Su said: "When my son was leaving the room, I tried to take out the envelope... to give to Loy but he told me to keep the envelope and asked (me to) leave the office...

"I do not mind if there is any disciplinary action as long as my son can stay in STTA."

In the same statement, she denied it was a bribe: "No, it was just a thank you gesture for him so that he can help my son."

About a month later, Su was quizzed by a second CPIB investigator, Mr Cheot Zhi Chen.

She said that being from China, she did not know Singapore's laws well.

In the statement Mr Cheot recorded, she added: "I regret what I have done and in China, what I have done by offering the money to Mr Loy is part of our culture. I hope the judge and the prosecutor can understand my concerns as a mother and show leniency. I know what I have (done) is wrong."

Last October, Mr Li, 29, was hauled before an STTA disciplinary committee for violating house rules.

The former world junior singles champion had allowed a female friend to spend a night at the STTA hostel.

He has since been sacked and the STTA said its decision took into account his previous disciplinary issues.

The trial resumes today.

corruptiontable tenniscourt