Ex-firm director fined RM21,000 over false Socso claims

JOHOR BARU: A former company director was fined RM21,000 by a Sessions Court here for making false claims with the Social Security Organisation (Socso) for a government hiring initiative.

P. Poowesna, 36, pleaded guilty to four charges of submitting false claims under the Penjana Kerjaya 2.0 programme yesterday.

Judge Datuk Ahmad Kamal Ariffin Ismail imposed the RM21,000 fine in default of one month’s jail.

Poowesna was first charged together with her ex-husband A. Mohana Sundharam, 35, on Nov 14 last year with submitting false claims amounting to RM62,120.

The court was initially set to sentence both accused yesterday but Mohana, who is also a youth party leader in Johor, was absent from the proceedings.

His surety presented a medical certificate from a private hospital to the judge and informed the court that he was down with food poisoning since Tuesday morning.

The court allowed his case to be heard on Aug 8 and proceeded to deliver its sentence on Poowesna.

The duo were charged with submitting false claims to Socso for the Penjana initiative purportedly for 10 new employees on May 30, 2021, with the intention to mislead the agency.

They were directors of a company called TMB Resources at the time.

The four charges against them were framed under Section 18 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009, read together with Section 34 of the Penal Code.

The case was prosecuted by MACC prosecutor Nur Zahida Muhammad Ruzi while Poowesna was represented by lawyer Muhammad Mohd Nasir.

The Penjana Kerjaya 2.0 initiative was a hiring incentive programme where employers could apply up to RM6,000 per person per month for up to six months when hiring new employees or apprentices.

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