A MAMASAN at a popular nightclub, Tiananmen KTV & Lounge, appeared in a magistrates court on Tuesday for filing incorrect tax returns.
Lee Phui Fun, 48, admitted she did not declare a total of S$325,213 (RM726,865) in booking commissions for two years, for which she would have had to pay S$58,483.60 (RM130,713) in taxes.
She is the first mamasan to be hauled to court by the taxman.
Lee, also known as Irene Su, has been a mamasan, or mummy, at the posh nightclub at the Novotel Apollo hotel in Havelock Road since February 1995.
A nightclub customer is typically charged a booking fee of about S$35 (RM78) an hour for the services of a dance hostess and the hostess mummy gets a cut of S$3 (RM7). The hostess gets about S$26 (RM58), and the nightclub gets S$6 (RM13).
Lee had earned S$164,780 (RM368,291) in booking commissions in 1997 and S$160,433 (RM358,575) in 1998, but did not declare them in her tax returns.
The omissions came to light after a tax audit by the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (Iras).
Mamasans also earn commissions when customers buy bottles of liquor and book private karaoke rooms. They also get tips of around S$100 (RM220).
Lee, the lounges top earning mamasan, is believed to have more than 20 hostesses under her wing.
On Tuesday, the woman was fined S$2,000 (RM4,500) after she pleaded guilty to two charges.
She also had to pay a penalty of S$116,967.20 (RM261,427) twice the tax undercharged. She could have been fined up to S$5,000 (RM11,000) or jailed up to three years or both. The Straits Times/Asia News Network