Singapore (AFP) – A group of wealthy Singaporeans have been jailed for stealing hundreds of millions of dollars from the country’s political establishment.
Key points:The Singaporeans who were jailed on Tuesday were arrested after stealing from the state’s political partiesIn total, police seized about 5.8 million dollars from politicians and their family members, prosecutors said, as they were accused of stealing money worth billions of dollars.
More than half the money was reportedly stolen from the ruling Democratic Party (DP).
Police swooped on the house of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife, wife Tan Jihan, on the outskirts of Singapore after a tip-off from a citizen.
Police found $2.5 million cash, which was used to pay for trips, flights and luxury cars, according to a police statement.
Police said they confiscated $1.3 million in cash, $800,000 in credit cards and $4.8m in banknotes, among other assets, while the pair were jailed for two years and nine months.
Singapore’s Prime Minister said he was shocked by the amount of money stolen from his party, saying it was “not right” for anyone to steal from Singapore’s political leaders.
“I am shocked by what I saw, and what the people who live there have done, and how they have stolen so much money,” he said in a statement.
“The amount of theft is unacceptable.
It’s not right.
It is not acceptable.”
The DPP, a political opposition party, is seen as a pillar of the ruling Singapore government and has been blamed for the countrys economic woes.
Its leader, Mahathir Mohamad, is also in jail for graft and abuse of power.