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Singapore – Recruiter fined for breaching law

13 March 2013

The operator of a Singapore-based staffing company was convicted on Tuesday for her involvement in producing work pass applications on behalf of an unlicensed employment agent, local media reports.

Tay Lian Huay, the owner of Sunlight Employment Agency, was fined SGD 30,000 (USD 24,000) for the offence. She is one of the first people to be charged for such a crime since regulations were changed in 2011.

The revised Employment Agencies Act (EAA), which came into effect in April 2011, introduced harsher penalties for offenders operating in the staffing industry. 

Under the revised EAA, any person operating an unlicensed employment agency can be fined up to SGD 80,000 (USD 64,000) and/or be sentenced to 24 months in prison. For subsequent convictions, fines can rise to SGD 160,000 (USD 128,000) and can include a 48 months’ jail sentence.  Employment agencies can also have their licenses revoked if they are implicated in such cases and will be barred from operating a staffing firm in the future.

Tay Lian Huay pleaded guilty to one charge of making a work pass application on behalf of the unlicensed recruitment agent who was identified as De Luna Noriza Dancel. Tay has to pay the hefty sum of SGD 30,000, also receiving a one-month prison sentence.

The agent had contacted Tay to submit several work pass applications between August and October 2011, paying her for both successful and unsuccessful applications. The agent was previously fined SGD 50,000 (USD 40,000) in January last year.

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