Bogus agent charged for unlicensed real estate work

Romesh NavaratnarajahSeptember 22, 2016

man arrested-crop

Shakir Khan was arrested in March this year after CEA officers suspected that he was conducting estate agency work illegally.

A 56-year old Singaporean man was charged in court on Wednesday (21 September) for conducting estate agency work without a license, revealed the Council for Estate Agencies (CEA).

Under the Estate Agents Act, it is an offence for entities or individuals to act as estate agents or salespersons in any property transaction if they are not licensed or registered by the CEA.

Shakir Khan was arrested in March this year after the CEA suspected that he could have been conducting estate agency work illegally.

Khan faces three charges for acting as an estate agent without a license and two charges for holding himself out as a salesperson of a licensed estate agent, HSR International Realtors (HSR), without first being registered by the CEA.

In May 2012, Khan helped close a lease transaction for a HDB flat in Kallang by arranging for the tenant to view the flat and preparing the Letter of Intent using the letterhead of HSR, even though he was not an agent with the company.

He also assisted a tenant renew his lease on a HDB flat in Bedok in August 2011 and August 2012. For these two renewals, Khan collected $2,600 in commission.

In September 2012, Khan acted again on behalf of the same tenant of the Bedok flat and liaised with the agent of the landlord to arrange for the viewing and prospective lease of a flat in Pasir Ris. The transaction did not go through after the landlord’s agent discovered that Khan was not registered with the CEA and was not a HSR agent.

Between January and February 2016, he also helped another tenant rent a flat in Ang Mo Kio, in which he received a commission of $700.

Officers from the CEA began investigating Khan in 2012 following a complaint from one of his clients. Investigations showed he had been put on the wanted persons list by the police in 2006 for cheating offences and had been on the run since then.

The CEA advises consumers who choose to have a property agent to help them in their property transactions to engage only property agencies and agents who are licensed and registered by the CEA.

“The public can verify whether an entity or individual is licensed or registered with the CEA via the Public Register on the CEA website,” it said.

 

Romesh Navaratnarajah, Senior Editor at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email romesh@propertyguru.com.sg

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