Singapore's alleged nickel scammer sued in $517 million action

Market trading boards are seen at the Australian Securities Exchange in Sydney, Friday, February 9, 2018. ( AAP Image/Ben Rushton) NO ARCHIVING

SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) – Singaporean businessman Ng Yu Zhi, who is at the centre of an alleged US$1.1 billion (S$1.5 billion) nickel trading scam, was sued by the liquidators of his Envy Group for damages totalling about $517.4 million, according to a court document.

Three of the Envy companies and the liquidator team led by Mr Bob Yap of KPMG Singapore filed the suit against Mr Ng and three other people on Nov 19, according to the document, which listed the nature of the case as insolvency.

Mr Ng, 34, faces 69 charges in the case that has riveted Singapore’s moneyed class after his February arrest. Among the allegations is that he raised at least $1.46 billion in what authorities have called one of the city-state’s largest-ever suspected investment fraud schemes.

Hundreds of investors, from businessmen and top legal professionals to financiers and footballers put their money into the scheme, which touted average quarterly gains of 15 per cent.

The High Court approved a wind-up of Envy Global Trading and its sister firms in August. The companies were founded by Mr Ng, who also had the controlling stake in all of them. Mr Ng remains on bail and has not pleaded guilty. Mr Ng declined to comment. Mr Yap did not immediately comment.

Along with Mr Ng, Ms Lee Si Ye, an Envy shareholder, was also named in the court document. Mr Ju Xiao and Mr Cheong Ming Feng, former Envy employees, are the third and fourth defendants.

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