A Singapore press holdings portal

Crime

Tan Tam Mei
Thursday, Jul 3, 2014

Crime

They kissed as 'part of the show'

The New Paper | Tan Tam Mei | Thursday, Jul 3, 2014

Mr Soh Chin Chai entered a sham marriage last year (2013) because he was financially strapped. He and his 'wife' from Vietnam, who entered the marriage to secure a job in Singapore, were arrested last September. Mr Soh served his six month sentence, and has now turned over a new leaf working at Soon Huat Bak Kut Teh.

They spent their first "date" chatting about their hobbies and interests in a Japanese restaurant.

By their fourth meeting, they were married.

This was not because it was a case of "love at first sight", but because they were entering a marriage of convenience and were preparing each other with answers for an interview which would take place when they had to register their union.

Singaporean Soh Chin Chai, 38, and Vietnamese national Dang Thi Hoang, 28, married in March last year.

The Vietnamese national wanted to secure a job in Singapore, while Mr Soh, who was strapped for cash, was promised $2,700 as part of the deal and $400 for each successful visit pass application secured for his "wife".

He confessed to the sham marriage and was jailed for six months in September last year, while his "wife" was jailed for eight months.

Mr Soh, who has since started life anew after his release from prison in March, told The New Paper last Friday: "I was told that even if we got caught, it would be a few weeks in jail at most, so I didn't think about the consequences."

He recalled how he was working as a club manager after being released from an earlier prison sentence in 2012 for drug consumption, and got to know a man who introduced him to his "fake wife".

Mr Soh had previously been in and out of jail 11 times for various criminal offences such as vehicle theft, snatch theft and criminal breach of trust.

He said: "I tried to make a living, but the pay wasn't enough for my daily expenses. So I thought why not (get involved in the sham union)."

His life did not change after they got "married".

Mr Soh said: "We weren't friends and we didn't interact much. All she needed to do was to put some clothes at my home. I didn't even need to change my single bed to a double one."

When the time came for them to register their marriage, Mr Soh readily admitted that he did not even bother to put on his best clothes for the ceremony, which was held in a cafe at Fort Canning.

No comments yet.
Be the first to post comment.