- Summary for Kong Hee's testimony on 20 Aug 2014:
DPP produced emails that showed Serina Wee approaching Kong Hee and Tan Ye Peng to find ways to increase sales for Xtron.
One email also showed Kong Hee gave approval.
Kong Hee argued that all Xtron's billings to CHC were legit and commercially viable.
One particular mark-up of $630,000 was necessary as Xtron ran out of money at that time.
Kong Hee agreed that the mark-up of $630,000 caused a loss for CHC... but Kong Hee argued that it actually benefitted CHC to the effect that a financially strong Xtron would be able to fulfill the crossover mandate that CHC could not achieve on its own.
DPP put it to Kong Hee that he had control on income transfers from CHC to Xtron and transfers of expenses from Xtron to CHC, and that Kong Hee was involved in getting the financing for the crossover project.
DPP put it to Kong Hee that in fact he was the ultimate authority in ensuring the crossover project was being financed.
DPP insisted that Kong Hee had to do with the dealings of the alleged sham bonds.
DPP also produced an email that showed Kong Hee telling Tan Ye Peng and Chew Eng Han to find ways to get funds for Sun Ho.
Kong insisted that the ultimate decision makers for the alleged sham bonds are CHC Board of Directors and Xtron's directors.
DPP asked Kong Hee if he had told Tan Ye Peng and Chew Eng Han to look only for bank loans for Xtron and nothing else, would they still have gone ahead to do the bonds?
Kong Hee said "Chew Eng Han is a very persuasive man and is a very tenacious man. He may come back to me a few weeks later and suggest it again..."
Kong Hee further said that he had told Tan Ye Peng and Chew Eng Han to check and to clear the bonds with the lawyers and auditors.
DPP put it to Kong Hee that he was lying when he said he was not involved in the financing because he wanted to distance himself from the bond transactions which he knew to be sham and solely motivated by a desire to channel the Building Fund under the guise of investments to the crossover project.
Kong Hee replied he is a pastor not a financial person and therefore he did not make decision for the alleged sham bonds but he left it to CHC Board of Directors and Xtron's directors to make the decision on the bonds.
DPP continued to show emails that Kong had ultimate control of Xtron's cash flow.
The emails showed that Serina Wee always kept Kong Hee updated on Xtron's cash flow and Serina Wee also sought Kong Hee's instructions when Xtron's cash flow was running low.
Kong maintained again that it was CHC Board of Directors that approved all the decisions pertaining to the alleged sham bonds. Kong Hee maintained that Serina Wee was merely asking him for his opinion.
(Note: Kong Hee terminated negotiations with Wyclef without asking Xtron's directors and this conflicted with his stand that he only acts on Xtron directors' approval)
DPP went on to show evidence that before 2003, CHC was using church funds to pay for Sun Ho's singing career via Attributes Pte Ltd (APL).
DPP went on to show minutes of AGM on 27 Jun 2003, after the Roland Poon incident.
In the minutes, Kong Hee told the Executive Members (EM) that not a single cent of church fund was used for Sun Ho's singing career.
DPP asked Kong if this is accurate.
Kong Hee replied that Brother Foong Daw Ching told him that no church fund was used, so Kong Hee told the EMs that no church fund was used as he respects Brother Foong Daw Ching.
DPP asks again if this is accurate that not a single cent of church fund was used.
Kong Hee said that in his simplistic mind, he followed Foong Daw Ching's advice. On hind sight, Kong Hee felt he should have checked with other people rather than to just believe in what Foong Daw Ching said.
DPP asked how did Hanafi's refund come back to cover crossover's deficit.
Kong Hee told the court that Hanafi had promised to underwrite the crossover and when the Roland Poon incident broke, the board approached Hanafi Wahju to cover the amount APL paid for Sun Ho via a refund of the building fund that Hanafi contributed.
DPP then showed a document that John Lam gave a different story.
John Lam told CAD officers that Hanafi gave wrongly to the building fund thinking that it also covered crossover. John Lam said that the Building Fund gave a refund to Hanafi so that he could re-direct the donation to the crossover.
DPP then asked Kong which is the correct version.
Kong Hee replied that John Lam's testimony should be the correct one..
DPP asked again if it was accurate to say not a single cent of church fund was used.
Kong Hee replied that he was simple minded to believe Foong Daw Ching and he should have checked with others on this.
Kong Hee also said he didn't know that there was a refund from Building Fund to Hanafi Wahju. Kong said he thought it was fresh new funds.
Only later then Kong Hee knew it was a refund of Hanafi Wahju's donation to the Building Fund.
DPP put it to Kong Hee that contrary to his evidence suggesting that he was not so clear about Wahju's reallocation of his Building Fund to the crossover in 2003, Kong Hee was actually the one who wanted the reallocation to the crossover so that he would be able to tell the church that no church funds had been used.
Kong disagreed and maintained that he was just reiterating what Brother Foong Daw Ching had told him.
To be continued....
- From ST:
"They also sought to show that Kong closely supervised the other co-defendants.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Christopher Ong produced a 2007 e-mail in which Kong had berated Tan Ye Peng for failing to ensure that his wife's China concerts were a success. "The Beijing and Shanghai events cost us so much money... but at the end, who came? It was a joke!" said Kong in the e-mail. "Time wasted. Efforts wasted. Objectives not met. Money thrown away unnecessarily. I don't get it. How have we become good stewards of money? We tried to save a few thousands on hotels and (threw) hundreds and thousands on result-less concerts."
Kong added: "How I wish I can run the whole show the way I run our church (in) the last 18 years! But I can't... (My wife and I) are putting our lives and destiny at the hands of our disciples, our spiritual children. We hope you guys don't let us down. - See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/courts-crime/story/kong-decided-what-money-spend-how-much-and-where-it-would-come-201
Does the email reveal more of Kong and his thinking?
Is SH concerts successes as claimed?
Is Kong attributing the success of church to himself as a good leader or manager?
Does Kong n family's lives and destiny dependent on how well the leaders managed Sun's career?
Kong decided on 'what money to spend, how much and where it would come from'
SINGAPORE - City Harvest founder Kong Hee was the key decision-maker behind plans to sink church funds into his wife's Ho Yeow Sun's music career in the United States, the prosecution said in court on Wednesday.
- Now that more dirty laundry is revealed, I can’t help but feel that my decision to leave CHC was right. There is just too much dishonesty and hypocrisy.
We were told no church money was spend on SH’s secular music career, but we know now that this is not true. We were told how successful SH was in Asia and how she was getting successful in the US, but we know now her CD sales volumes were boosted with church money, without which, her CDs wouldn’t sell as much. It was deliberate dishonesty on the part of the CHC leadership to “buy” those music awards for SH. This is unfair to the other singers and artistes who could have won those awards.
Despite such blatant dishonesty and hypocrisy, thousands of CHC members still choose to support KH. Indeed, to each his own. Everyone has their own choice, to stay or to leave. And they then will face the consequences themselves.
I feel sorry more for the younger members. We see many of them defend and support the accused vociferously and would not bat an eyelid to engage in “hate campaign” against those who “backslided”. They are brain-washed over the years since joining CHC and seem to have lost their capacity to discern good from bad and right from wrong. Their mindset, attitude, value system and belief are all molded by the CHC leaders to follow their instructions.
Just recently, we read that SOT students are instructed to queue for the tickets to attend the court sessions. These tickets are then handed over to CGLs or more senior members to attend the sessions to boost support for KH, or are put to waste in a deliberate intent to prevent members of the public from witnessing the court sessions, which explains the empty seats that some have observed.
I wonder if there are more independent sources to verify that the above is indeed factual. If this is true, it is a blatant dishonest act. These young CHC members are in their impressionable age where their mindsets and values are easily molded.
I pray that their parents and their family members will be able to bring their loved ones away from such mind-poisoning.
I am sure no one in their right mind should support dishonesty and hypocrisy. Anyone who supports dishonesty and hypocrisy is moving away from God.
- Hello Brothers and Sisters in Christ!
I've decided to launch another building fund campaign to build a bigger court room after realizing how small court 1 is with all the *censored* SOT students being bussed down early in the morning to queue and trying to prevent the other interested members of the public to attend the open sessions.
So pray to God about how much you want to pledge and after you've written down the amount, look at it again and ask yourself if that amount represents your love for God. *plays some emo ANB videos and songs at the background*
- We were once called backsliders. Now we have come back to haunt you. There is a god afterall.
- If Kong really cared for the church and really believed in the Crossover project, why didn't he choose a younger, prettier, better singer like Annabel or Alison instead of Sun, who is old, ugly and only sounds reasonable good after lots of post-production using softwares like Melodyne or Autotune. Though it doesn't mean that the two girls would have made it big, but at least they have a much better chance than Sun.
When a Senior Pastor makes a decision that ends up enriching himself and his wife, you don't have to be a genius to know he wasn't being altruistic.
Have you ever asked the question that if Annabel went to Hollywood instead of Sun, would Kong approved of her staying in the $28,000-a-month 2209 Canyon Drive mansion and surrounding her with a team of personal assistants, managers, personal trainer, personal nanny, limousines, and shopping sprees in Rodeo Drive?
I think you know the answer is a big fat NO.
- "I maintain my integrity"
Says the very man. Has he maintainted his "integrity" well? Yes and yes but before you disagree, these are very valid points:
1.) He has maintained his integrity to lie through his teeth.
2.) He has maintained his integrity to portay those who woke up and left as "rats", "not of us".
3.) He has maintained his integrity to show his incompetence. Everything he is "unsure", "don't know", "not aware", "too tired", "busy flying about", "they didn't tell me".
4.) He has maintained his integrity by living a lavish life and expecting his followers to believe what they see and hear. Without a single cent from the followers, will he and his wife continue living such lavish lives?
For those who woke up and left the church before/during/after the trials, you have done the right thing.
There will be tears, anger, denial, disappointment, but trust the Lord that He alone is your faithful shepherd.
No matter which church you go to, always stick to your Bible, seek the Lord daily, commit all your ways to Him and most importantly, feed on His Word.
Don't get your nourishment based on what people say, get it for yourself, exercise your decision-making, trust the Holy Spirit's leading and never give too much time to church activities while leaving your most loved family alone at home.
God ordained Adam's union to Eve before the Church came into existence.
What is the Church? The Book of Acts is always relevant no matter the times or seasons. Find out what is the Church and what did they do?
The Bible itself should be the final authority, make Christ your priority.
If you are not going to any church for whatever reasons, take heart that Christ is always faithful and will never leave you nor forsake you, no matter your circumstance/s.
Open your heart to the Bible, read it again and again, let the Holy Spirit comfort you.
Christ is faithful and true.
Dear Admin/s of CHC Confessions, thank you very much for giving everyone of us here a platform to voice out and share our stories. God bless you.
And p/s: To our beloved Gary "Mustacho" (whom our dear "Fred" has given such a title), your humor is truly appreciated. They can be very funny and yet at the same time, strike a deep chord with us. There is truth in humor and humor is good for the heart and soul.
- When Kong Hee was first brought into investigations, I felt sad and SMS my second cell group leader. These are the questions that I asked him.
1) When KH flew to foreign countries(e.g. Yoido Church in Korea) to preach, he will always stop over at US to see Sun Ho before coming back to SG. I believe Yoido will sponsor his living expenses and air ticket from SG to Korea and then back to SG. Now that he's stopping in US, who pays his extra ticket fare?
2) You told me that when he is still drawing salary from church, his salary is $8000 and he's living in a HDB flat. I thought there's some sort of HDB regulations that couples with combined pay of $8000 and above are not egligible for HDB?
3) I feel that a pastor being paid $8000 is a lot. Shouldn't a founder and senior pastor have passion for serving God? A person with passion shouldn't be drawing so much salary.
My CGL's answer is this:
1) He pays for his own ticket. [Now I am told that the church pays for his expensive first class ticket.]
2) His wife is a famous singer and earns lots of money so he can afford such luxurious housing. [Now it is exposed that his wife isn't as popular as how he projected his wife to be.]
3) He doesn't draw any money from church. [I'm talking about the time he's still drawing salary.]
My first CGL is someone who enjoys getting attention and always want to be in the middle. During cell group, she will always defend Sun Ho out of the ordinary. She will always criticise forum threads claiming that Sun Ho dress like a prostitute. She will then make mention that KH is not rich and only has a SKIN SHOP.
What the hell, just the monthly rent for the SKIN SHOP at Orchard ION is already more than 10 times a fresh grad salary.
There may be lots of people with evil intention who are posting on this confession page, but only through questions brought up about KH and CHC will those who are blinded by KH regain their sight.
- If you are a member of CHC and want to leave, they will never take it lightly or respect your decision. Let me give you an idea of how CHC culture is, from a member who spent about 4 years in that church. This is going to be lengthy.
I attended my first service when I was 13. Half an hour before service had started, I sat down and opened my school book as I had a test the next day. Within seconds, a cell group leader I didn't even know came up to me and said, "Don't you know the service is about to start? Keep that away. Take out your bible and notebook." This from a church who claims they encourage their members' academia.
It was that leader (her name is Veronica, by the way) who stipulated that all students must study 8 - 10 hours per week and should declare these hours in a 'spiritual diary' that we should also submit. A spiritual diary must detail your transgressions for the week and any ‘spiritual unburdening’, including (but not limited to) things you knew or found out about other members of your cell group. This was to be submitted during cell group meetings once or twice every week and if you didn’t write one, you had better pray that you remembered on the train and had the time to hastily scribble out something. Otherwise, the cell group leader would humiliate you, saying things like, “Wow, someone’s been really good this week! Nothing to confess?” YES I HAVE BEEN GOOD, I DIDN’T CHEAT ANYONE OF THEIR MONEY THIS WEEK. THANKS FOR YOUR CONCERN.
They also regularly reshuffled the cell groups among this ‘sub-zone’ and members were encouraged to spend hours after cell group meetings and church services with our new cell group members. This on top of the study hours, cell group meetings, church services (which we must come at least an hour and a half earlier to queue for), as well as ‘quiet time’ with God every night. My leader said, and I quote, “You should spend at least 2 hours on your knees to God every day. Why not more?”
Also, they encouraged male cell group members to send female cell group members home after cell group meetings. And when I mean send home, I literally mean all the way to their doorsteps and wait until their parents opened the door. (?!)
One time I was 14 and on a date, and a cell group member saw my date and I holding hands. I knew immediately that something horrible was going to happen. Veronica was by now too busy with other stuff to spend time with members individually and dictated that we should be managed via her protégés, all of whom were handpicked and being trained by her to be CGLs as well. So my sub-leader called me up and straight up accused me of having a boyfriend. I didn’t deny it. She then spent an hour lecturing me on the importance of my studies (say what?) and the evils of teenage lust and pre-marital sex and kept insisting that now was not the time for me to get into ‘BGR. Lastly, she threatened to call my parents unless I break up with him. WTF?
Another time, I texted her that I would be missing service on that day as I was not feeling well. She called me to accuse me of skiving as I just stepped out to get a bottle of milk. Our conversation went:
CGL: “Are you sure you’re sick today?”
CGL: “Aren’t you outside right now?”
CGL: “You’re outside! Don’t deny it, I can hear traffic.”
Me: “I went downstairs to buy something.”
CGL: “If you’re well enough to do that, why can’t you come for service?”
WHAT?! Is it an all attendance mandatory triad group that would chop your hand off if you are absent for a meeting?? This is just one example of the way they outright scold and humiliate members. Honestly, now that I think back, I really wonder what gives them the self-entitlement to say such things and wield such an iron fist over their members. I joined by CHOICE, and who are YOU to force me to do anything?
Now that I read all these exposes about how cell group leaders are under immense pressure to meet their ‘quotas’ and are even coerced to go over the quota, I sort of understand why they are so militant about attendance and rabidly accuse people of stuff, lol. I made the decision to leave when I was 16 and I did it by heading completely off the grid. It was the only way they would ‘give up’ on you.
Not to say that I didn’t meet nice leaders, too. There were two particular leaders in that subzone that were always genuinely caring and concerned about their members and would encourage you if they noticed you were down and would listen if you needed to talk about anything. Even after I left the church for good, they still texted me sometimes to ask how I was and never once pestered me to return. Those are the ones that I genuinely respect, not the ones that shove authority down my throat.
- Summary for Kong Hee's testimony on 18 Aug 2014:
Mr Chew Eng Han (CEH) spent considerable time to query Kong Hee on the Irregularities surrounding the Multi-Purpose Account (MPA).
The unsuspecting donors to the MPA were 28 couples and a few individuals handpicked from the inner circle.
The donations were meant for evangelism through Sun's concerts in Asia.
(Note : Our understanding is that the donors' list to MPA was later expanded to include 50 pastoral staff and other staff. They were told to tithe to a Man of God instead of the church or Building Fund)
CEH confronted Kong Hee and said he felt cheated by Kong Hee as Kong Hee presented a fake account on MPA in 2009.
CEH alleged that Kong Hee lied to the donors and proclaimed a lower figure collected than the actual amount donated.
CEH alleged that Kong Hee lied so that he could claim that the donations were not enough as Kong Hee urged the donors to give more.
Kong Hee countered that the amount he presented in 2009 was after paying Sun Ho $400,000 for royalties and salaries.
(In 2009, the average collection in MPA was $1.5mil-2mil.)
Kong Hee chided CEH that only CEH and his wife made an issue
whereas other donors did not say they were disappointed.
Kong Hee further said it is CHC culture not to reveal details.
Kong insisted that MPA is meant not just for the purported crossover but also to cater for Kong Hee's and Sun Ho's livelihood.
Kong Hee also countered that MPA donors were the initiators on the donations and they were all willing donors.
CEH went on to show an email that CHC bought $1 million worth of Kong Hee's products.
Kong Hee insisted that it was the board's decision.
CEH went on to show evidence that Serina Wee used Hanafi's company, (FIRNA) account to refund Kong and CEH sought to prove Kong engineered these financial transactions.
Kong insisted it was Wahju's own initiative that he wanted to bless Kong Hee.
CEH said this is clearly another round-tripping which used CHC funds to purchase FIRNA bonds so as to channel funds to Kong Hee's personal bank account.
Kong disagreed and said it was Wahju's own initiative.
CEH then said the bonds are clean and it was what Kong Hee did with the money that made the bonds sham.
CEH wanted to show Kong Hee preached hard to get the money to pay for the penthouse at Sentosa Cove.
Kong Hee sought to show that he preached a lot on soliciting donations due to his love for mission work to reach out to the unsaved.
CEH rebutted that and said it was for Sentosa Cove and the evidence was in a 4.5hr recording.
CEH alleged that Kong Hee mentioned in the recording that he preached like "siao" because he needed to meet payments for the penthouse at Sentosa Cove.
(CEH wanted to use a 4.5 hour recording but the Judge stopped it as Edwin Tong and Tan Ye Peng's lawyer objected to it repeatedly.)
CEH showed evidence that Serina Wee had Hanafi's (FIRNA) bank account and Kong Hee had control on how to channel monies to Kong Hee's personal bank account via FIRNA's bank account.
Kong Hee denied and said he did not know how Serina Wee had access to Wahju's company bank account.
But the email evidence showed Serina asking permission regarding some funds transfer via FIRNA to Kong Hee's personal bank account.
Kong maintained that he was not sure why Serina Wee would have such access to Wajhu's company's bank account.
Edwin Tong objected as CEH moved on to show evidence that CHC KL was also used by Kong Hee for round tripping.
Kong insisted the refund via CHC KL was an independent action of CHC KL's board.
CEH went on to talk about a confession letter where Jimmy Yim (the previous lawyer) wanted Kong Hee to take the rap.
Kong said he wanted to take the rap but didn't in the end.
CEH insisted Kong Hee never had the intention to take the rap.
CEH also asked Kong Hee to present the confession letter.
CEH went on to ask about the CAD interview with Sun Ho and how Kong Hee lied that it was because of CAD investigations that Sun Ho could not continue with the release of the albums.
CEH said Sun Ho's passport was returned back to her after they put up a bail of $500k with the court.
Kong insisted investigations by CAD was the reason they never continued the release of the albums.
The investigations gave them no morale to continue.
CEH went on to show evidence that Sun Ho knew that Xtron was bankrolled by CHC.
CEH showed emails that Sun Ho was in the loop.
Kong denied and said Sun Ho didn't know.
CEH then showed the email but Kong Hee said Sun Ho might not have read.
(CEH said then I will ask her myself before the court.....)
CEH went on to ask if Kong gave to the Building Fund (BF) or gave tithes to CHC.
Kong replied he gave to MPA.
CEH asked if MPA was for his livelihood then how could he tithe to
Kong said his tithe was used for crossover.
CEH asked Kong Hee that from 2005-2010 whether Kong Hee gave tithe to CHC or gave to Building Fund (BF).
Kong Hee said he gave to MPA, not tithe to CHC or Building Fund.
CEH then asked in year 2005-2010, there was one year where Kong went on stage and told the members that God spoke to him (Kong Hee) to up the donation amount and he instantly obeyed and changed the amount (on the cheque) on stage.
How come now Kong Hee say he never gave to the Building Fund?
CEH said Kong Hee was acting on stage.
Edwin Tong and Tan Ye Peng's lawyer objected but the Judge ruled in favor of CEH and asked Kong Hee to answer the questions.
Kong said he never pledged any money at that moment but gave an offering, Edwin Tong objected on irrelevance...CEH insisted that what Kong Hee did on stage was an act because there is no record of Kong Hee's pledge or offering (to the BF).
CEH moved on to say crossover is not church mission but Kong Hee's and Sun Ho's personal mission.
Kong insisted 2007,08,09 monies were needed for crossover
So all his tithes and donations to building fund goes to MPA.
For crossover Kong Hee insisted that the money came from MPA and Kong Hee tithed to MPA.
CEH went on to say he didn't have the same ulterior motives as Kong Hee and Tan Ye Peng.
When CEH helped them, he genuinely believed it was God's mission.
CEH went on to show that Kong Hee hired private investigators before the CAD raid in June 2010.
They hired private investigators in March 2010 and they found out all the bloggers' n forumers' identities.
CEH showed blackberry messages that Sun Ho said: "Can we shut the mouths of all these haters? Can we take legal action against them?"
CEH moved on to show emails he sent to Kong Hee and Sun Ho, asking them not to worry about the bloggers and the truth will show we are clean.
CEH was trying to show that his state of mind was that he genuinely believed in the crossover project as mooted by Kong Hee.
The blackberry messages showed Sun Ho was pissed off by the bloggers.
To be continued.