Each news article we have collected for this article provides different details in this fascinating exchange between Chew Eng Han and Kong Hee. We will be looking at this exchange in future articles. The last article by Channel News Asia is the most interesting. Chew said in court:
“He told the court that between 2007 and 2009, church members, including him and his wife, had voluntarily given money to a Multi-Purpose Account, which would be used to support Kong and Ms Ho’s livelihood. They did so because they believed in the ministry and partially because Kong and Ms Ho had gone off the church’s payroll.”
Remember, Phil Pringle acknowledged that Kong Hee copied his leadership giving model and Vision Builders model. Kong Hee also says that he and his church copy what he sees Phil Pringle does at C3 Church.
“This is our ‘Rise and Build’ video and- Many people come to City Harvest Church and they look at our church. Look at our pulpit. Our Rise and Build. And they say, “Hey! Why is it that in Australia they kinda copy after you?”
Well actually we came here and copied everything from Christian City Church. So we have our own Rise and Build and I just thought I show you this latest installment where we anounced to our church, SunTec City Convention Center. It’s a twelve thousand seater hall. And ah- it’s amazing. And already, in one month after we signed the lease, we are already starting to earn dividends from all the profits, eh! So lets just watch the video right now.” – Kong hee, C3 Presence Conference, Session 4, Sydney, 2010.
Don’t you think it is odd that Phil Pringle also went off his C3 church’s pay roll about the time Kong Hee did? If any member can explain why Phil Pringle decided to go off the church’s payroll but was able afford a new $3.5 million property, we would love you to email us.
The Straits Times reports,
City Harvest trial: Former treasurer Chew Eng Han calls founder Kong Hee a liar
SINGAPORE – Former City Harvest treasurer Chew Eng Han called Kong Hee, the church founder, a liar in the first five minutes of trial today
Chew said Kong had lied in statements to the Commercial Affairs Department about Chew’s involvement in transactions and Kong’s own knowledge of these.
Chew also claimed that the church leadership lied about the Asia achievements of Kong’s wife, Ms Ho Yeow Sun.
He said one of Ms Ho’s achievements – being part of a stamp series in China – was “a scam”.
Source: By By Feng Zengkun, City Harvest trial: Former treasurer Chew Eng Han calls founder Kong Hee a liar, The Straits Times, http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/courts-crime/story/city-harvest-trial-former-treasurer-chew-eng-han-calls-founder-kon, Published 18/08/2014 12:26 PM. (Accessed 19/08/2014.)
The New Paper reports,
Co-accused confronts Kong Hee in court: ‘Pastor, you’re a liar’
You lied, used me and shortchanged the faith of church members.
Former City Harvest Church (CHC) fund manager Chew Eng Han was blunt when he went on the offensive questioning the church pastor he followed for two decades.
City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee, he said, created “well-structured” and legal bond agreements for the church.
He admitted these became “sham bonds” after how they were used.
Chew, who was cross-examining Kong Hee yesterday, also claimed that singer Sun Ho’s successful music career was a farce and fooled many, including himself, into believing in CHC’s Crossover Project.
These damning allegations by an accused comes after the prosecution’s case that Kong, Chew and four other CHC leaders allegedly misused more than $50 million of church money through sham bonds.
The trial continues.
Source: By Ronald Loh, Co-accused confronts Kong Hee in court: ‘Pastor, you’re a liar’, The New Paper, http://www.tnp.sg/news/co-accused-confronts-kong-hee-court-pastor-youre-liar, Published 19/08/2014 6:00am. (Accessed 19/08/2014.)
The TR Emeritus reports,
Ex-CHC treasurer Chew Eng Han calls Kong a liar
In court today (18 Aug), former CHC treasurer Chew Eng Han, who is one of the 6 leaders being charged by the state, called Kong Hee a liar. Chew is defending himself.
Chew said Kong had lied in statements to the CAD about Chew’s involvement in transactions and Kong’s own knowledge of these. He also claimed that CHC leadership had lied about the music achievements of Kong’s wife, Sun Ho.
Chew told the court that one of Ms Ho’s achievements in China was actually “a scam”. He said that what Kong told the church about Ms Ho singing the theme song at the 2007 Special Olympics, and how she had been given a special commemorative series of stamps by organisations in China, were all “false claims”.
Chew said that she did not sing any theme song for the 2007 Special Olympics in Shanghai. As for the stamps, Chew said that “those stamps are nothing more than personalised stamps that anybody can go to the post office to pay for”. Chew produced copies of Ms Ho’s stamps and others in the China series to show the difference.
The 6 CHC leaders, including Kong, have been charged with conspiring to misuse $50.6 million of the church’s funds to bankroll his wife’s music career – $24 million to fund her singing career and another $26.6 million to cover the tracks of the first amount spent.
Prosecutors said that the 6 devised sham bond investments to embezzle money meant for a new church building and used most of it to finance Sun Ho’s pop singing career. Sun Ho isn’t charged with any offense.
She had been touted by the church as a big commercial success.
Chew said, “After a series of discoveries since 2013, I discovered the Crossover was not what it was supposed to be… Many members of City Harvest Church that trusted the leadership took what was told to us at face value. I was one of them.”
The music success of Ms Ho had been grossly exaggerated, Chew said and added that Kong knew that his wife’s secular music success was not real.
Kong knew all the while that money was being used to boost Ms Ho’s CD sales and her position on the music charts, Chew said as he continued to cross-examine Kong. Chew said that church members were spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy her CDs
In his defence, Kong said, “They gave us the money and we used it for the buying (of) CDs. We didn’t buy the CDs as something fake, for every CD we bought, there was an intended recipient.”
Chew also charged that in a bid to boost sales, about $30,000 was spent on iTunes gift cards in 2009 to purchase Ms Ho’s US single Fancy Free.
Kong refuted this, saying that the money – which was less than $30,000 – came from private donations, and was not meant to boost sales of the single. “It was a marketing strategy to create momentum for the launch of her single,” Kong said.
Chew said that Ms Ho’s fan base was, in reality, smaller than what Kong allowed church members to believe.
At one point, Chew said to Kong in court, “I’ll submit to you that you consciously kept all relevant information away from me so that you could continue to use me to help you do whatever was necessary to help arrange the necessary funding.”
Source: Editorial, Ex-CHC treasurer Chew Eng Han calls Kong a liar, TR Emeritus, http://www.tremeritus.com/2014/08/18/ex-chc-treasurer-chew-eng-han-calls-kong-a-liar/, Published 18/08/2014. (Accessed 19/08/2014.)
Channel News Asia reports,
SINGAPORE: City Harvest Church founder Kong Hee had “shortchanged the faith of the church members” because he knew that his wife Sun Ho’s secular music success was not real, the church’s former investment manager Chew Eng Han said in court on Monday (Aug 18).
Chew and Kong are among six church leaders standing trial for allegedly using millions of church dollars to buy sham bonds to bankroll Ms Ho’s pop music career.
Chew, who is defending himself, continued his cross-examination of Kong. He accused Kong of lying to church members about Ms Ho’s achievements, all the while knowing that they were shelling out their own money to boost her CD sales. Chew on Monday produced a slew of emails and documents to bolster his claims.
He said he had trusted the church’s leadership and believed in the Crossover Project from the beginning, but a series of discoveries in 2013 led him to discover that the project “was not what it is supposed to be”.
‘FAKE’ COMMEMORATIVE STAMPS AND ITUNES SALES?
For example, Chew called a commemorative series of stamps in China featuring Ms Ho a “scam” and nothing more than “personalised stamps anybody could go to a post office and pay for”. Kong refuted this claim, saying that the stamps were presented at a genuine ceremony attended by officials.
Chew also revealed how church members spent thousands on iTunes gift cards to boost sales of Ms Ho’s US single, Fancy Free. Kong refuted this, saying that the money came from private donations, and was not meant to boost sales of the single. “It was a marketing strategy to create momentum for the launch of her single,” Kong said, adding that the US Billboard Dance chart does not depend on sales.
Chew also charged that Ms Ho’s fan base was, in reality, smaller than what Kong allowed church members to believe. He said that what Kong told the church about Ms Ho singing the theme song at the 2007 Special Olympics, and how she had been given a special commemorative series of stamps by organisations in China, were all “false claims”.
Chew said these successes led him to believe returns could be generated from Ms Ho’s planned US debut album. The album was part of the church’s Crossover Project, a way of evangelising through secular pop music.
“I’ll submit to you that you consciously kept all relevant information away from me so that you could continue to use me to help you do whatever was necessary to help arrange the necessary funding,” he said to Kong.
“YOU HAVE BEEN TOTALLY IRRESPONSIBLE”: CHEW TO KONG
Chew added that millions of dollars had gone into the production of songs for the album and asked Kong to account for this expenditure. “You have been totally irresponsible in the spending of the money,” he charged. He also denied being part of a conspiracy with Kong and said he himself had been deceived.
Chew insisted that he had created a proper set of bonds that were legally documented. But he said it was how the bond proceeds were used that tainted the transaction and turned them into sham bonds.
He even went as far as to say that the Crossover Project was not about the missions of the church, but that it was a “personal crossover”.
Chew told the court he had left the church after realising Kong had “deceived the people closest to him”.
He told the court that between 2007 and 2009, church members, including him and his wife, had voluntarily given money to a Multi-Purpose Account, which would be used to support Kong and Ms Ho’s livelihood. They did so because they believed in the ministry and partially because Kong and Ms Ho had gone off the church’s payroll.
Chew said in 2010, these members were told that there was a deficit in this account and they were asked if they could give more to take care of the deficit. He charged that the deficit had only come about because money had been taken from the account to pay things like royalties and bonuses to Ms Ho. Chew charged that this was kept from the donors who were “closest” to the couple, and their “greatest supporters”.
It was also heard that the money from the account could have been used to partially pay the US$20,000 (S$24,900) monthly rent on a house in the US, which was also used as a missions base and dance studio. At one point, Chew also accused Kong of round-tripping in another instance, to get back part of royalties from Kong’s materials that had initially been refunded to the church. Kong denied this, saying that this was money given to him by church donors.
KONG WAS INITIALLY WILLING TO “TAKE THE RAP”: CHEW
Chew later accused Kong of flipping and turning on his convictions when giving evidence. Chew also said that during the course of investigations, Kong had indicated he was willing to “take the rap” for the matter, after the church’s lawyers told him he had been “negligent”. Chew said: “I find it very hard to believe that in a few days after the raid, you were totally in fear (such) that you would be willing to take the rap for everybody. And then, somehow the letter did not get to CAD (Commercial Affairs Department) and at the subsequent interviews with the CAD, you started to point the finger at me. That is incongruous, I cannot understand how that can happen.”
Kong clarified that he had been worried when investigations commenced, but had not been “in fear”.
Source: ByChannel One Asia, Published 18/08/2014 14:27, Updated 18/08/2014 23:42. (Accessed 19/08/2014.)