A 35-year-old man, Mohammad Herianto Bin Abdul Hamid (Mohammad Herianto), was convicted on 3 October 2019 and sentenced to 13 months' imprisonment for carrying out a series of timeshare recovery scams.

Between 2012 and 2013, Mohammad Herianto worked as a sales representative at Fine Harvest Pte Ltd, and as a sales manager at Khoo and Krishnan Associates Pte Ltd. Both companies purported to offer timeshare recovery services.

While working at these two companies, Mohammad Herianto made various false representations to potential customers to deceive them into paying for timeshare recovery services. In particular, he made material misrepresentations that:

a) the companies had been appointed by timeshare developers to terminate the timeshare memberships;

b) the companies had successfully helped other customers terminate their memberships and recover their monies; and

c) He also showed them false documents purportedly issued by a third-party company which stated the amounts that the customers could recover.

In fact, Mohammad Herianto knew that no money would be recovered for the customers.

A total of 16 timeshare owners were deceived by Mohammad Herianto into handing over close to $200,000 in termination and recovery fees to Fine Harvest Pte Ltd and Khoo and Krishnan Associates Pte Ltd. They not only were unable to recover their timeshare membership investments, they also lost their recovery fees.

Mohammad Herianto pleaded guilty to nine counts of cheating offences while 19 other counts of cheating offences were taken into consideration. His two accomplices have also been charged with cheating offences. Court proceedings against the two are ongoing.

The Police would like to advise members of the public to be vigilant when receiving unsolicited calls from companies or persons purporting to help them recover monies from their timeshare memberships. Members of the public should adopt the following precautions:

Be wary when an unknown person calls you regarding your timeshare membership;

Refrain from providing any personal information or information on your timeshare membership to the caller;

Conduct background checks on the company's track record before engaging its services;

Check with your timeshare developer if the caller was authorised by the timeshare developer to deal with your timeshare membership;

Request for a copy of the documentation on their proposals, representations, contracts and agreements. Be wary if the company is reluctant to provide you with such documentation; and

Exercise caution especially if you are asked to make upfront payments.

Source: Singapore Police Force