A Singapore national has been convicted in New South Wales of two charges of Dealing with Property suspected of being the Proceeds of Crime, after $600,000 was mysteriously found at The Star casino in a safety deposit box.
In a local court document obtained by Yahoo 7, the defendant Yan Wei Koh told police a story about his aunt in Newcastle, but the judge was unsure how much truth there was to the man’s story.
Judge Henson stated the facts are convoluted, but the Singapore national is thought to have arrived in Australia on April 27,2015.
The judge stated: “He signed the usual declaration to the effect that he did not have more than $10,000 in Australian dollar value on his person.”
“Within 8 days of arrival he deposited $299,650 in cash in a so called "safe keeping account" at Star City Casino,” Judge Henson said.
The next day Koh deposited $703,000 in cash into the same safety deposit box.
According to the documents police were called after a significant portion of cash was withdrawn.
“Although not clear as to when and in what manner records at the Casino indicated some gambling activity on the part of the defendant and withdrawal of a significant portion of cash by him. Police were contacted, presumably by the Casino, and they attended the Casino on 7 May 2015 at 3.00 p.m,” Judge Henson said.
The court documents state that the defendant was residing in a neighbouring hotel, and when he was questioned he claimed some of the money had come from family.
“The defendant told police that the $700,000 deposit came from his Aunt Jin Xiu Sun in Newcastle,(and) was the proceeds of a brothel business and was intended to be given to her ex-husband living in China,” Judge Henson said.
The documents reveal the defendant claimed he had been asked by his "aunt" to collect luggage containing the money and keep it safe.
According to the documents police inquiries established Sun is not related to the defendant and she denied being the source of $703,000. “Whether that is true in fact is unknown,” the judge said.
The court documents state: “Subsequent inquiries by police establish that the "uncle" in China does not exist.”
An affidavit disclosed to the court revealed that information provided by the defendant helped to facilitate two people being charged with money laundering type offences and some $1.59 million in "tainted money" being confiscated.
Koh pleaded guilty to two counts of dealing with property suspected of being the proceeds of crime and was sentenced to at least nine months in jail according to online reports.