Jail for a man involved in a case where the staff of a travel agency paid bribes to increase sales

SINGAPORE — In a bid to make more sales and earn higher commissions for his team, a travel agency operations manager conspired with a colleague to bribe a man so that he buys plane tickets for his company at the agency.

Tan Han Ser and Bong Fung Sen, who were from Majestic Travel, worked together to deliver the bribes – more than $7,000 in cash, as well as plane tickets and travel insurance worth $5,571 – at See Chun Keat.

See had purchased the tickets for Furuno Singapore, a company that provides services to the shipping industry.

Tan, 60, was sentenced to five weeks in prison on Thursday after pleading guilty to offenses including four counts of bribery.

Bong and See, both 38, were dealt with earlier in court. They had committed the offenses in 2018 and 2019.

At the time of the breaches, Bong was working as a travel consultant, while See was employed as a deputy director of systems integration.

Deputy Attorney General (DPP) Janice See clarified that at Majestic, compensation for travel advisors and their operations managers is in the form of commissions.

Under this structure, Tan’s team was entitled to approximately 60% of the monthly gross profits from the collective sale of hotel reservations and airline tickets they made.

Bong broached the idea of ​​offering See bribes to buy plane tickets from Majestic, and Tan gave his approval to the plan.

The DPP said Tan also suggested that the funds paid to See be in the form of credit notes from Majestic, as this would allow the bribes to appear legitimate and honest.

She added that Tan also felt that if the corrupt arrangement was uncovered by authorities, those involved could say the credit notes were refunds for overpaid tickets.

The court heard that, among other things, See told Bong in January 2019 that he wanted to travel to Japan with his family of six and suggested the bribes could be used to offset their plane tickets. and their travel insurance.

Bong then proceeded with the purchase after informing him that it would cost $5,571 for seven plane tickets and travel insurance.

On March 29, 2019, Bong issued an invoice for the purchase of the seven plane tickets to Japan and the travel insurance for See, and he accepted it.

The court heard that during this time, Tan was aware of this arrangement between Bong and See.

Tan had therefore engaged in a plot with Bong to give See a corrupt gratuity.

Willie R. Golden