SINGAPORE: A receptionist at a clinic at Mount Elizabeth Medical Center diverted more than $ 88,000 in three and a half years.
Sharmaine Andrianto, 48, was sentenced to six months in prison on Friday (October 25) for pleading guilty to a breach of trust as an employee, with three other charges taken into consideration.
Misappropriation occurred between April 2014 and November 2017, with S $ 88,820 involved in all charges.
The court heard that Andrianto began work in February 2014 as a receptionist for HK Tan Surgery, a clinic offering general surgery and laser aesthetic treatments located at 3 Mount Elizabeth.
She ran the registration desk, dispensed medicine and received payments, and also received full access to the Clinical Program Manager (CPM) as part of her job.
The CPM captured patient records, payment details, and dispensed medications, and Andrianto was allowed to make changes to the records.
The receptionist had to generate a daily sales report through the CPM and a daily settlement through the credit card terminal at the end of the day, before handing over the documents to the clinic director.
After verifying that the numbers were calculated, the director returned the money to Andrianto for credit in a bank.
Andrianto diverted the money by keeping an amount to himself after receiving the principal's money, before handing it over to a CISCO employee for banking.
She would change the payment records in CPM at the end of each month to ensure they were posted with bank receipts.
She also pocketed some cash payments made by the patients by adjusting the amounts paid in the CPM or altering the records to indicate that the patient had paid with VISA instead of cash.
Andrianto covered his clues by excluding the original receipts issued to the patients and printed out the amended ones, and reflected the amendments in the relevant documents before sending them to the Singapore Revenue Authority.
"According to the accused, she became increasingly confident over the years after receiving the money and changing the records because she thought there was no way for the complainant to detect the discrepancies," said Deputy Prosecutor Lim Yu Hui.
CLINICAL DIRECTOR COVERED IT WHEN LEFT, CRIME DISCOVERED
Her offenses were discovered in late November 2017, when a director of the clinic covered Andrianto's duties when she left.
She noted discrepancies in the transactions and arranged for an auditor to perform verifications, which revealed that $ 88,820 had been accounted for in the last four years.
When Andrianto returned from his leave, the director confronted her, and Andrianto initially wondered how his trick had been discovered.
She later admitted to taking the money, spending it with her and her family, and altering the records.
The director filed a police report in December of that year.
Andrianto made a full refund for the clinic's losses.
The prosecutor asked for six months in prison, saying Andrianto had been convicted of breach of trust earlier in 1994 and 1995.
Although these dates are dated, they are relevant, and the value involved is substantial and compromised over time, the prosecutor said.
Populus Law defense attorney Ng Kwong Loong said in his mitigation that his client had borrowed money from moneylenders and was harassed to make payments.
However, the prosecutor said this was his first time Andrianto had not informed police of this in his statements.
The judge said it bothered him because, despite previous convictions having been dated, it was the third time Andrianto had done so.
"My client has made a full refund of all charges and their track record is … more than 20 years ago," the defense said, asking for four to six months in prison.
The judge granted Andrianto a postponement of the sentence to November 25.
For every charge of breaching a server's trust, she could have been arrested for up to 15 years and fined.