SINGAPORE (June 14): Annica Holdings, the oil and gas equipment specialist, says former employee Edwin Sugiarto on Wednesday served a Singapore High Court writ of summons to the company, together with a statement of claim.

Sugiarto is claiming $416,784.25, together with costs and interests up the date of full settlement, for unpaid wages, medical expenses claims and a payment in consideration for a non-compete undertaking arising out of his cessation of employment that were allegedly due and payable by the company to Sugiarto under an employment agreement in writing dated Jan 1, 2016.

Annica was previously known as Oculus, a contact lens company where Sugiarto was once its chairman and executive director. He became the Chief Operating Officer on Jan 6, 2016, after Sandra Liz Hon Ai Ling took over as executive director and CEO.

When Annica acquired Horizon Greentech in Dec 2016 to diversify into the business of recycling tyres, Sugiarto was re-designated as operation director of Industrial Engineering Systems to “pave way for new leadership”.

See: Annica eyes diversification into recycling business with $4.2 mil acquisition

Annica also made the headlines recently when its chairman Jeffrey Ong Su Aun, who is also the managing partner of boutique law firm JLC Advisors, quit abruptly from his post on May 20 and went missing just when some $33 million belonging to Allied Technologies, reportedly when missing from an escrow account in the law firm.

See: Annica chairman Ong quits just as JLC senior partner goes missing with $33 mil of clients' money

Ong was arrested more than a week later in Malaysia and charged in Singapore on June 1 for cheating CCJ Investments of $6 million. He is facing eight additional charges of committing forgery for the purpose of cheating.

Annica is also one of the companies reportedly linked to alleged 2013 penny stock crash mastermind John Soh Chee Wen and co-defendant Quah Su-Ling.

On the latest suit, Annica says it is presently seeking legal advice and “intends to vigorously defend its position against the alleged claim under the suit”.

The company says it will make the relevant announcements and shareholders are advised to exercise caution when dealing with Annica’s shares.

Shares in Annica last traded at 0.1 cent on June 12.