SINGAPORE (May 31): The trial of John Soh Chee Wen and Quah Su-Ling, the alleged masterminds behind the 2013 penny stock crash, has been adjourned after five consecutive weeks of hearing. But it is expected to get more exciting when the hearing resumes in August.

So far, a number of prosecution witnesses have been compelled, under cross-examination, to admit to have lied or told half-truths. At best, they appeared unsure and admitted to flouting procedures.

Still, these witnesses, especially the remisiers, are considered to be at the periphery of the case. Presumably, they played no part in the planning of the share manipulation, and were happy to execute the series of trades that led to higher commissions.

When court proceedings resume on Aug 19, a longer list of prosecution witnesses will be called.

Significantly, compared with those called in the first part of the trial, quite a few of them are seen to be much “closer” to Soh and Quah.

The list is expected to include Soh’s alleged former girlfriend, Adeline Cheng Jo-Ee, as well as another group of remisiers and traders who had much more frequent and direct contact with either Quah or Soh.

At least two other individuals, closely linked to Soh and Quah, are to take the stand as well.

The first is Chen, who was LionGold’s director of business and corporate development.

In the run-up to penny stock crash in October 2013, Chen was the frontman for LionGold, talking to investors and media on how the string of proposed acquisitions of gold mines made the company a compelling investment.

And then there is Goh Hin Calm, the duo’s “treasurer”-turned-prosecution witness. The former interim CEO of IPCO International, Goh was supposed to stand trial with the duo, but chose to plead guilty in March this year, just before the trial began.

How did the first part of the penny stock trial play out, and what else can we expect in the upcoming tranche in August?

Find out more in The Edge Singapore (Issue 884, week of June 3), available at newsstands now.

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