The 41-year-old Singaporean woman named Lin Qian Dai Lin had been working at stationery manufacturer Nippecraft. As part of her job scope, she would often make travel bookings and order food on the Foodpanda app for her boss. Because of this, Lin stored her boss’ credit card details on the Foodpanda app on her own mobile phone.
More than a year after leaving the company, Lin ordered some food from Burger King via Foodpanda and mistakenly selected her former boss’ credit card as a payment mode. When she realised that her own credit card had not been charged and that she had got away with it, she started charging her orders to the card repeatedly, eventually placing S$2,285 worth of orders before she was caught.
Lin’s dishonesty was eventually discovered when her boss made a police report after detecting multiple unauthorised transactions with Foodpanda on her credit card.
On 12 January 2021, Lin was sentenced to five months’ jail for cheating by District Judge Eddy Tham.
What is the definition of ‘cheating’ under the Penal Code?
‘Cheating’ is an offence detailed under Sections 415 to 420A of the Penal Code.
Pursuant to Section 415 of the Penal Code: ‘Whoever, by deceiving any person, whether or not such deception was the sole or main inducement, fraudulently or dishonestly induces the person so deceived to deliver or cause the delivery of any property to any person, or to consent that any person shall retain any property, or intentionally induces the person so deceived to do or omit to do anything which he would not do or omit to do if he were not so deceived, and which act or omission causes or is likely to cause damage or harm to any person in body, mind, reputation or property, is said to “cheat”’.
Put in layman terms: If you pretend to be someone you are not and this causes someone other than yourself to suffer from physical or mental harm or losses to their reputation or property (in this case, monetary losses due to the fraudulent credit card usage), you are guilty of cheating!
Lin was probably charged under section 420A—”obtaining services dishonestly or fraudulently”. The maximum penalty for such an offence is 10 years’ imprisonment, or a fine, or both.
Other Foodpanda-related crimes that have made headlines
In July 2019, a Foodpanda delivery rider was investigated by the police for allegedly duping a customer into paying for her order twice. The customer by the rider was asked to pay for her food order again in cash despite already having paid the full amount via NETS.
In August 2020, a 17-year-old teenager was arrested for allegedly cheating Foodpanda of more than S$14,000 in false refund claims.
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