Top IT executives charged for bribery in S'pore

Former employees of services provider CrimsonLogic, are alleged to have offered US$20,710 to clinch a customer contract worth US$236,680.

SINGAPORE--Four top executives of CrimsonLogic have been charged for corruption, in a case which alleges money was exchanged to guarantee the government-link company would be awarded a lucrative IT contract.

CrimsonLogic's CEO Velusamy Mathivanan, along with his vice president of trade and logistics, financial controller and general counsel, were charged in court yesterday for offering a bribe of S$35,000 (US$20,710) to Matthias Tan, IT head of supermarket chain Carrefour. In return, Tan agreed to recommend the IT services provider to his management for an e-supply chain contract worth S$400,000 (US$236,680).

Formerly known as SNS (Singapore Network Services), CrimsonLogic was founded in 1988 by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, International Enterprise (IE Singapore), PSA Corporation and Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel). IE Singapore was the former Singapore Trade Development Board, and is the country's agency for promoting the local economy and local companies on the global landscape. PSA, which runs PSA Singapore Terminals, operates the country's container transshipment hub.

CrimsonLogic is known in the island-state for its work in government-related projects, including a nationwide e-trade documentation system, TradeNet, and the Electronic Filing System which was developed for the Singapore Judiciary. The company also has offices in several countries including China, India, Malaysia and the Philippines.

Singapore's Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau investigated the cases after receiving a complaint in Sep. last year. Carrefour's Tan, who is no longer with the company, had pleaded guilty in Feb. this year and was fined S$25,000 (US$14,793).

If found guilty, the four CrimsonLogic executives--the general counsel has since left the company--could be slapped each with a fine not exceeding S$100,000 (US$59,170) or be jailed for up to five years, or both. Their case will be heard again in a pre-trial conference set for Nov. 8.