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Lawyer Lim Tean faces 5 charges including criminal breach of trust

Lawyer Lim Tean faces 5 charges including criminal breach of trust

Source: Straits Times
Article Date: 13 May 2022
Author: Shaffiq Alkhatib

Lim was offered bail of $30,000 and his pre-trial conference will be held on July 6.

Lawyer and opposition politician Lim Tean, 57, was handed five charges in court yesterday for multiple offences.

They are for criminal breach of trust (CBT), unlawful stalking and acting as an advocate or solicitor without a valid practising certificate.

A search on the Ministry of Law's website reveals he is currently the sole proprietor of Carson Law Chambers.

According to court documents, he allegedly committed criminal breach of trust as a solicitor of the firm between Nov 14 and Dec 4, 2019.

In a statement on Tuesday, the police said Lim had been entrusted with $30,000 which had been awarded to a former client as settlement in a motor injury civil suit.

Lim is said to have misappropriated the monies.

In an unrelated case, he allegedly stalked a former employee between April and May 2020 by repeatedly sending her flirtatious text messages, causing her distress. Details about her job were not mentioned in court documents.

Lim is also accused of acting as an advocate or solicitor without a valid practising certificate on 66 separate occasions between April 1 and June 9 last year.

Among other things, on April 19 last year, he attended a court hearing as the legal representative for The Online Citizen (TOC) editor Xu Yuanchen, better known as Terry Xu, in a case involving Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

PM Lee had filed two defamation suits over an article published on the TOC website and separately sued Mr Xu and Ms Rubaashini Shunmuganathan, the Malaysian author of the article.

Last September, the High Court awarded Mr Lee a total of $210,000 in damages.

The Singapore Courts website states that every solicitor who wishes to act in the capacity of an advocate and solicitor must apply for a practising certificate.

It added: "For every practice year, every solicitor must apply for a practising certificate before acting in the capacity of an advocate and solicitor. The term 'practice year' means the period from April 1 in any calendar year to March 31 in the next calendar year."

For the current case, Lim was offered bail of $30,000 yesterday and his pre-trial conference will be held on July 6.

If convicted of criminal breach of trust, he can either be jailed for life or receive a sentence of up to 20 years' jail and fined.

For unlawful stalking, an offender can be jailed for up to a year and fined up to $5,000.

Offenders convicted of being an unauthorised person acting as an advocate or solicitor can be jailed for up to six months and fined up to $25,000.

Source: Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Permission required for reproduction.

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