Eight Members Found Guilty For Fraudulent Housing Withdrawals
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) today reported that eight members have been found guilty and fined a total of RM13,300 by the courts during the third quarter of 2012 (Q3 2012) for their involvement in fraudulent housing withdrawals.
Fines imposed by the courts to each offender ranged between RM800 and RM3,000. Five out of the eight convicted members may face possible jail term of up to two months should they fail to pay the fine.
In a statement issued today, EPF General Manager for Public Relations Nik Affendi Jaafar said, "Our firm stand against fraud validates EPF's commitment in combating fraudulent withdrawals among members as well as to reiterate our zero-tolerance policy towards fraud of any kind.
"Fraudulent withdrawal which involves the submission of falsified documents by members to facilitate the approval of withdrawal from their own account is a serious offence where guilty members face a penalty of fine and imprisonment."
The eight convicted members were charged under Section 59 of the EPF Act 1991. Under the Act, members who have been found guilty of fraudulent withdrawal are liable to a maximum jail sentence of three years or a RM10,000 fine, or both.
Once convicted, members who return the amount withdrawn within six months from the conviction date may only be allowed to apply for the same withdrawal after two years from the date the amount is returned. Those who fail to return the amount or return the amount after six months from the conviction date will forever lose their right to make that particular withdrawal.
"As the custodian of members' savings, we would like to stress that the savings in the EPF are intended to finance one's life during retirement. Members who attempt to withdraw their EPF savings prematurely through illegal means will only be at the losing end," reminded Nik Affendi.
He cautioned members not to fall prey to such wrong-doings of fraudulent withdrawals whether from their own self-doing or through collusion with others.
"There have been many cases where guilty members were found to have been helped by syndicates who target members who are financially in need and offer so-called assistance in return for an exorbitant fee."
Members who are eligible to make withdrawal are reminded that if they wish to make any withdrawal application, they should deal directly with the EPF which offer free services.
EPF members are urged to give their support in EPF's combat against fraud. Anyone wishing to report any instances of fraud or attempts at fraud can do so by calling the EPF Anti-Fraud Hotline at 03-2616 2121 during working hours from Monday to Friday.
About the Employees Provident Fund (EPF)
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) is Malaysia's premier retirement savings fund, providing basic financial security for retirement. The Fund is committed to preserving and growing the savings of its members in accordance with best practices in investment and corporate governance. It will always be guided by prudence in its investment decisions. As a customer-focused organisation, the EPF delivers efficient and reliable services for the convenience of its members and registered employers. The EPF continues to play a catalytic role in the nation's economic growth, consistent with its position as a leading savings institution in Malaysia.