A Singaporean judge is set to hear allegations that a former NTUitive director fixed contracts with two outsourcing companies he had relations with.

Cheng Choong Hung, a former director at NTUitive, an innovation arm of Nanyang Technological University (NTU), is to be prosecuted for 43 alleged offences relating to fraud worth over S$231,000 ($170,000), Today Singapore reported yesterday.

Cheng was also a director of NTU’s TechBiz Xccelerator and Institute of Media Innovation when the allegations are supposed to have occurred from 2014 until 2016.

Cheng faces 10 years in prison if found guilty in addition to a fine of up to $370,000. The trial follows reports of his indictment in late 2018.

The charges stem from the accusation Cheng conspired to award NTU contracts to IT services provider I-KnowHow and software developer Voidworks in contravention of the university’s conflict-of-interest procedures.

Cheng apparently had direct involvement with I-KnowHow having sourced projects and made business decisions for the firm.

He allegedly worked in consort with Louise Lai Pei Hsien, then-director of I-KnowHow, who received a 17-month prison sentence in November 2019, to conceal his role from tax invoices and hide the company’s payments to the university in a separate bank account.

At Voidworks, he allegedly colluded with its former director Fung Kwok Pan.

He is accused of assigning his researchers and engineers work from under the I-KnowHow and Voidworks’ contracts, notably hiring NTU graduate Carmen Lu Jiawen at the former company after an interview at TechBiz Xccelerator.

NTU reported its concerns over Cheng’s practice to Singapore’s Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau in August 2016, a spokesperson for the university told Today Singapore.

Witnesses for the prosecution will include NTU researchers and engineers assigned to projects outsourced to I-KnowHow and Voidworks.